In the US alone, about 475,000 people die each year of cardiac arrest. Of those 475,000, around 350,000 cardiac arrests happen outside of hospitals. Because people don’t receive immediate help, around 90% of them die at the scene.
Back when I worked towards getting my truck driver’s license in Germany in 2008, I was required to get certified in extended first aid before they would even let me behind the wheel. Car drivers were not trained as much but still needed to pass a basic CPR course before they even could start taking practical driving lessons.
By now, the courses in Germany have been revised and consist of a full 9-hour first aid course with practical training as a prerequisite for all driver’s license classes. It’s the same training you need before starting a full EMT-training.
The US is ahead of the curve
In the US, no such training is mandatory to get your driver’s license. But since 2017, they have a system that I’m even more impressed with and I personally think should be adopted worldwide.
38 states have made CPR courses mandatory in high schools before students can receive their diploma. This is even better than the German system, where you are only required to learn CPR if you want to get a driver’s license.
I know from experience that it takes around 12 minutes for the EMT to arrive at our house. So having someone around with knowledge of CPR can be a real lifesaver. We should not limit this to people who have a driver’s license, but to anyone who has the chance to help.
I honestly think that the US system — making CPR mandatory at schools — should be adopted worldwide, without exceptions. If schools are there to teach us important things for life, this is definitely one such thing.
Important lessons that should be included
No one wants to end up in a situation where someone’s life is in danger. But if we are caught in such a…