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New Cardiac Arrest Law Means Coaches Have Homework To Do

By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Pennsylvania's scholastic athletic coaches have some homework, meeting the guidelines of a just-implemented law on preventing sudden cardiac arrest.

Act 59, or the Cardiac Arrest Prevention Act, was signed at the end of May and became effective July 29th. With school about to resume, that gave the Departments of Heath and Education a very small window in which to develop and roll out what the law requires -- mandatory training for coaches on a devastating illness.

"The information has been posted on the Department of Health's website," Amy Flaherty of the Health Department said. "We've been working pretty closely with some folks at the American Academy of Pediatrics, PIAA, the American Heart Association, to get information in the hands of coaches."

Who have to go online, read the provided materials and certify that they have done so. Suspension from coaching is the or-else. Flaherty says much of the focus is on noticing symptoms prior to cardiac arrest, so help arrives before catastrophe.

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