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Hearing held for bill to require AEDs in Ohio schools, rec centers

Testimony was heard Tuesday in support of a bill to require AEDs in schools and recreation facilities.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — In the House Health Provider Services Committee, emotional testimony was heard in support of proposed legislation to require AEDs in schools and recreation facilities.

House Bill 47 would advance the previously established law known as the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Law, also known as Lindsay’s Law. That law has three main components to protect athletes at the youth, middle school, and high school levels. 

It requires education on risk factors and signs and symptoms of cardiac arrest, it requires a protocol for a student to return to athletic activity if they are known to exhibit risk factors, and it defines the health care providers who can make these decisions.

What the new proposed law would require is AEDs in all Ohio schools as well as recreation facilities. It would also mandate the Ohio Department of Health to provide an action plan to ensure people know where the devices are located and how they are used.

One of those proponents of HB 47 is Richard Roll, the basketball official who collapsed during a Columbus Academy girls’ basketball game and whose life was saved with an AED.

Roll was joined by first responders, doctors, athletic trainers, and parents who said it needs to be a requirement, not a suggestion, that these devices are installed and available.

Jennifer Dunaway also testified Tuesday. She is a Groveport mother who has been pushing for this legislation

“It needs to be a requirement because it's a matter of life and death there's no recovering from sudden cardiac arrest without defibrillation,” she said.

A vote in the House is expected in the coming weeks before the measure moves to the Senate.

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