Applying Community-Based Strategies to Improve Survival

The very nature of cardiac arrest requires bystanders to be ready, willing, and able to act. Additionally, to be successful their actions — in combination with care provided by our EMS, fire and first responder agencies — must occur within a system that coordinates and integrates each facet of care into a choreographed group effort, focusing on neurologically intact survival to discharge from the hospital.

The Citizen CPR Foundation believes that a community-based approach designed to prepare the lay public to provide bystander CPR and rapid defibrillation strategies offers the best opportunity for successful resuscitation in the initial minutes after cardiac arrest and essential for improving neurologically intact survival.

Community-wide interventions that will improve overall resuscitation quality and increase the likelihood of early bystander-initiated CPR and prompt defibrillation are critical aspects of any effort to reduce death and disability from cardiac arrest. The optimal strategy is one that is localized and actively engages a community at all levels.

Looking for tools, resources and guidance in improving your own local chain of survival? We have you covered! Visit to access additional information including a self-assessment tool, recommendations and a constellation of other resources and guidance.

Browse HEARTSafe Community Resources >>

On-Demand Webinars Now Available!

We are delighted to have developed a comprehensive library of over 50 engaging and high-quality webinars related to sudden cardiac arrest to guide your ongoing learning and implementation. Regardless of your specific role in resuscitation, you will find relevant content discussed with celebrated resuscitation advocate-champions, complete with usable strategies and tactics.

Recent speakers have included Tony Walker, ASM; Tom Aufderheide, MD, MS; Bernd Böttiger, MD, DEAA; Jason Carlyon; Nadine Rott; Allyson Perron Drag; Rob DeLeo; Sarah Lamb, NRP; Mark Forgues, MEd, NRP; Katie Dainty, PhD, MSc; and more!

Take a look and bookmark and for future reference.

Cardiologist Resuscitates Two Runners in the Same Race

An incredible save story recently happened at the November 13th Monterey Bay Half Marathon. While running, cardiologist Steven Lome, D.O., stopped to assist a runner in cardiac arrest around the third mile marker. While he started CPR, someone else called 911 and an AED arrived a few minutes later. One shock restored normal heart rhythm, and Dr. Lome helped the runner to an ambulance.

Dr. Lome continued the race, hoping to catch up with his two teenage kids, also running. When he reached the finish line, another runner collapsed. Dr. Lome jumped into action and started CPR. An AED arrived in less than two minutes. Read the rest of the story from Runner’s World for the runner’s surprising reaction >>

Image via Runner’s World

Meet the 2021 Class of 40 Under 40 Honorees (pt. 4)!

As we wrap up 2022, we’re excited to introduce you to the fourth and final group of our 2021 40 Under 40 honorees, first announced and recognized at the 2021 Cardiac Arrest Survival Summit.

This is a dynamic group of young leaders, professionals, advocates and survivors who share a common passion: working to improve SCA outcomes.

Introducing the 40 Under 40 honorees recognized this quarter:

  • Shobi Mathew, BA, MS
  • Jillian Moore, Coordinator, Colorado CARES
  • Daniel Moran, Battalion Chief, Davie Fire Rescue
  • Ryan Morgan, MD, Assistant Professor, Anesthesiology, Critical Care and Pediatrics
  • Nichole Pereira, RN, MN, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Quality & Education PICU
  • Antonio Renta, BBA, EMT-P
  • Tomasso Scquizzato
  • Christopher Sun, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Felipe Teran, MD
  • Jadelyn Villegas
  • Mary “Molly” Wagner, RN, Staff Nurse II
  • Brianna Wolfe, Executive Director, Georgia Arrhythmia Foundation
  • Jasmine Wylie, B.A., SCA Survivor and Advocate

Visit our website to read more about these honorees and meet the rest of the 2021 Class of 40 Under 40. As Summit 2023 approaches, we’ll be opening a new call for 2023 40 Under 40 nominations. Stay tuned for details!

Defibrillation Strategies for Refractory Ventricular Fibrillation

Stu Berger, MD, Citizen CPR Foundation President, shares the following summary of “Defibrillation Strategies for Refractory Ventricular Fibrillation,” recently published in the New England Journal of Medicine:

Outcomes from sudden cardiac arrest have improved over the years as a result of technological advances in defibrillation techniques and technology. Other interventions that have included community CPR-AED education have also proved to be beneficial. However, shock-refractory ventricular fibrillation (VF) is not uncommon during out-of-hospital-cardiac-arrest (OHCA). This study offers an important discussion of exciting alternatives to shock strategies when conventional approaches fail.

In a randomized-controlled study reported by Cheskes et al. in the New England Journal of Medicine in November 2022, double sequential external defibrillation (rapid sequential shocks from two defibrillators) and vector-change defibrillation (switching defibrillator pads to the anterior-posterior position) have been proposed as techniques to improve outcomes.

In this study, 405 patients were enrolled with a total of 136 (33.6%) receiving standard defibrillation, 144 (35.6%) receiving vector-change defibrillation, and 125 (30.9%) receiving double-sequential external defibrillation. Of importance is the fact that survival to hospital discharge was more common in the double-sequential external defibrillation group than in the standard group (30.4% vs. 13.3%) and more common in the vector-change group than in the standard group (21.7% vs. 13.3%). Double-sequential external defibrillation was associated with a higher recovery of patients having a good neurologic outcome than standard defibrillation.

This paper offers an exciting possibility for improved outcomes by the employment of alternative methods for defibrillation in heretofore shock-refractory VF. Although the logistics of having a second defibrillator present and available might be challenging, the use of vector-change defibrillation with single defibrillator systems might be an alternative strategy when a second defibrillator is not available.

Although this trial was accompanied by/associated with some limitations, particularly with its institution around the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, and the operational challenges associated with that, this trial is indeed significant in that it does show that survival to hospital discharge was significantly improved with double-sequential external defibrillation and vector-change defibrillation compared to standard defibrillation in patients with shock-refractory VF during OHCA. We look forward to more data on these techniques, as well strategies for implementation. Although this is but one study, it is indeed a report of some exciting alternatives to conventional approaches and we look forward to additional studies and education with regard to implementation, if appropriate.

Read the full article on the NLM website >>








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Summit 2023 Exhibitor and Sponsor Opportunities Available Now!

The exciting Summit 2023 news keeps coming! Opportunities to secure your spot as an exhibitor and sponsor are now available. We’ve added several features to help maximize your visibility, interactivity and investment, delivering an outstanding and valuable Summit experience.

Reach out to Ginna Gutierrez at for more information. Or visit our Summit 2023 webpage and download our full exhibitor and sponsor prospectus.

Summit 2023 Call for Presentations Opens Jan. 2, 2023

We’ll open Summit 2023’s Call for Presentations on Jan. 2, 2023. In the meantime, be thinking about how you can help us challenge the status quo in sudden cardiac arrest. With a bias for action, we want presenters to stimulate attendees to think differently about the information presented. We also want to hear what presenters are doing to strengthen connections, communities and commitments to truly make an impact on SCA survival and survivorship.

Deadline for submissions is March 3, 2023.

Join Us Next Year in San Diego!

Planning for the Cardiac Arrest Survival Summit 2023 is officially underway! We’re excited to return to the Town and Country Resort in San Diego, Calif., Nov. 29 – Dec. 2, 2023.

Citizen CPR Foundation’s Cardiac Arrest Survival Summit is the central hub for resuscitation professionals, educators, experts, influencers and advocates, as well as the top decision-makers for resuscitation products, services and information.

We need your help in 2023 to inspire and enable action. Our conference theme is Respond. Revive. SURVIVE: Challenging the Status Quo in SCA. Every two years, the Summit brings together the widest array of resuscitation professionals and advocates in one place. In 2023, that collaboration will help inspire action, giving all attendees tips, insights and next steps that they can take home to their communities. That’s how we’ll continue to work toward our primary goal: improve SCA outcomes, which means more lives saved.

We’ll continue to provide Summit updates here in Currents, other email updates and through our social channels. Connect with us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram and stay in the loop as we count down to Summit 2023!


Happy Holidays From Citizen CPR Foundation!

We want to send our holiday wishes to each and every one of you.  All the best to you and your families for a happy, healthy, peaceful and safe holiday season.  And we send our best wishes for an amazing 2023 of continued advocacy and hard work to do all that we can do to save lives from sudden cardiac arrest.  The Citizen CPR Foundation will continue our collaboration with citizens, professionals, communities, survivors and organizations in order to save lives from sudden cardiac arrest.  Thank you for joining us in this endeavor and once again, Happy Holidays!

Stu Berger, MD

President, Citizen CPR Foundation

Paula Lank, BSN, RN

Chair, Citizen CPR Foundation