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Over 100 Lawmakers & Staff Sign Up for CPR

The Capitol1- Callie Hernandez_0.jpg
Photo by Callie Hernandez for KUT News
After the heart attack death of a former state representatives, legislators and their staff will get CPR lessons

Some Texas lawmakers and their staffs will be getting a course in CPR training, starting this week.

The Texas Society Anesthesiologists is organizing the training sessions, with help from the American Heart Association and the Seton Family of Hospitals.  State Rep. John Zerwas (R-Simonton) is an anestheologist and former society president.  He performed CPR on then-State Rep. Edmund Kuempel, after the Seguin Republican suffered a near-fatal heart attack and collapsed in a Capitol elevator during the 2009 legislative session. 

Rep. Kuempel died of another heart attack last November.

The training will include the Heart Association's CPR training and instruction on how to use an Automatic External Defibrillator (AED).  A member of the association's Texas State Advocacy Committee said in a news release that only eight percent of those who suffer sudden cardiac arrest outside of a medical facility survive.

Lt. Gov David Dewhurst, who presides over the state senate, praised the effort, noting how many people pass through the doors of the Capitol on a daily basis. 

Ian Crawford joined KUT as News Editor in 2008, after spending over four years as a reporter/anchor at KLBJ Radio in Austin. He began his broadcasting career while still in high school in Southern Oregon. During high school and college at the University of Oregon, he worked at times as a reporter, news anchor, sports play-by-play reporter, music host and commercial producer before moving to Texas in 2003.
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