Friday, May 23, 2008

Telecommuting to the UK, CPR Month and MORE!

WHEW!! May has been whirl-wind in more ways than one! A lengthy vacation took a chunk out of the middle of the month for me, but we are back home and running!

May started with the creation of the International Coalition to Defeat Childhood Obesity, which I am honored to have been nominated to. I will serve as an Arkansas Liaison to this incredible organization, with hopes to travel to the UK in a few months time. We had hoped to host the Rt. Honorable Dawn Primarolo MP, Minister of State for Public Health, here in the state of Arkansas. Sadly, the Myanmar tragedy preempted those plans. International focus needs to be with those victims at this time, and we in Arkansas are among those praying for the survivors, and supporting the relief efforts. However, we are blessed to live in the 21st Century, and have amazing technologies at our disposal! So, instead of shaking hands and meeting face to face, we clicked on our computers and enjoyed a “telecommute” to the UK! The UK is very interested in our BMI bill, and deeply wants to install a similar program in its’ public education system. We began by sharing our original BMI bill, which was voted into law and ratified by former Governor Mike Huckabee in 2003. We then detailed for Ms. Primarolo the rollercoaster ride of alterations and changes, and even the battle for repeal that have come since that time. We were happy to share with her that there is now a strong backing for the current BMI procedures in Arkansas, and the seven other states that followed suit. More meetings are to follow, so stay with me as we continue this process over the coming months. I anticipate my first trip to the UK in the near future!

May is national CPR month across America! We at the AHA are attempting to get as many persons as possible trained in this life saving technique. Workshops will be held nation wide through the month to train individuals on how to react in crisis situations, and how to be part of saving a life. If bystander CPR is not provided, a sudden cardiac arrest victim’s chances of survival fall 7 percent to 10 percent for every minute of delay until defibrillation. Few attempts at resuscitation are successful if CPR and defibrillation are not provided within minutes of collapse. Effective bystander CPR, provided immediately after cardiac arrest, can double a victim’s chance of survival. We will be having our CPR training day in Little Rock, on May 30th. I hope to see you there!

Also, Taking Wellness to Heart is gearing up for another fundraising season. Be watching for “Heartstrong Woman” conferences in your area, and opportunities to give to and AED drive near you. Last year alone we placed 17 Automatic Electronic Defibrillators in the state of Arkansas, bringing our overall total since 2005 to 47. We hope to double that number next year!