UCR Student Group and Department of Environmental Health and Safety Launch the Save-a-Life Initiative

The new initiative provides affordable CPR and AED classes to the entire UCR community

Name one location of an automated external defibrillator (AED) on the University of California, Riverside campus. Stumped? Well, you’re not alone. The discovery that many staff, faculty and students do not know basic life support skills motivated fourth-year biology student Krunal Patel to start the Save-a-Life initiative.

Under the student group Healthy Hearts, the mission of the Save-a-Life initiative is to provide the UCR campus with low-cost courses on how to use the external defibrillator and how to perform basic CPR.

“Our primary goal for the Save-a-Life Initiative is to increase the likelihood for someone to save a life through CPR,” said Patel, president of Healthy Hearts. “We offer free classes twice per week for UCR students.”

They turned to UCR Environmental Health and Safety for equipment, and after nine months of planning and organizing, they taught the first course April 22 to eight people. The participants received CPR certification valid for two years. They paid $14 for the use of the training manual. Typically courses in CPR are about $90.

Patel and fundraising director of Healthy Hearts Amol Trivedi teach the course, using curriculum from the American Heart Association. During the training, participants learn basic life support CPR and review the proper procedures for using the university provided AEDs.

Classes are offered twice a week on Thursdays and Sundays.  The next one will be held at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 5 at the Glen Mor 2 conference room.

Krunal Patel, president of Healthy Hearts, shows students correct hand placement for chest compressions.

Krunal Patel, president of Healthy Hearts, shows students correct hand placement for chest compressions.

For staff, faculty or students who want to register, go to the UC Learning Center with your NetID and search for the “AHA Basic Life Support CPR and AED Certification Course.” Complete instructions for registering can be found on the Healthy Hearts Highlander Link page. For more information on the Save-a-Life initiative or scholarships offered, email Healthy Hearts at ucrhealthyhearts@gmail.com.

Healthy Hearts will be having their next general meeting on May 11, 2016. Visit Healthy Hearts on Facebook for meeting times and future student organization updates.

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