The legislative countdown is on and one bill that has reached the halfway point would require the state’s K-12 public schools to develop a plan for heart emergencies and similar life-threatening situations.

The state House has passed the bill sponsored by Rep. Sherri Gallick, R-Belton.

“Most of the schools do have AED machines and last year, they had grants and they gave away 150 machines. So, in the event that you do not have an AED machine, all this requires is an emergency response plan so people know what to do and they don’t just panic when somebody has cardiac arrest,” said Gallick.

The proposal would also engage first responders and others to help schools craft guidelines.

“It will save lives,” said Gallick. “It is not just for children or kiddos. It’s for janitors, it’s for teachers, it’s for grandparents, and parents. It’s for people that are coming to the school for a school board meeting.”

Rep. Chad Perkins, R-Bowling Green, agreed that the legislation would save lives.

“I’ve had a mother from my district come to me with a very heartbreaking, compelling story of her son who died on a basketball court, a perfectly otherwise seemingly healthy young man who had an undiagnosed heart condition. This has been 10 years ago or so. And if such legislation were in place at the time, I believe her son would still be with us today,” said Perkins.

The proposal goes to the Senate to put its two cents in.

Similar Senate bills have been filed by Sens. Karla Eslinger, R-Wasola, and Lauren Arthur, D-Kansas City.

For more information on House Bill 1991, click here.

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