The “Why” behind the “What”

A Real Monday Night in Southwest Louisiana:

It was a normal Monday night for Marcus Carter, who was playing in a freshman High School basketball game for a local team. In the middle of the game, he collapsed. Marcus shockingly went into cardiac arrest and quit breathing.

In the stands were a nurse practitioner and a pharmacist, who both gave immediate medical help to Marcus. 9-1-1 was called and CPR was performed. The fire department, located just across the street from the school, arrived within a few minutes with an automated external defibrillator (AED) device, which was immediately hooked up to Marcus. The AED delivered a shock to resuscitate Marcus’s heart, then instructed CPR be performed. “The AED device helped save this young man’s life,” said the Director of Cardiology at CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital at the time.

  • Each year, we needlessly lose over 7,000 young persons to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) in the United States.
  • Defibrillation within three minutes of sudden cardiac arrest increases the chances for survival to 70 percent.
  • Shock within one minute of collapse raises the survival rate to 90 percent.
  • Response to a 9-1-1 call can take anywhere from 5-9 minutes.

After Marcus’ incident, CHRISTUS St. Patrick Foundation associates began looking into why schools didn’t have AED’s readily available on campus, especially during sporting events. The answer turned out to be simple: money. State budget constraints simply didn’t allow for AEDs to be purchased for every campus.

Since that time, CHRISTUS St. Patrick Foundation has been committed to providing AEDs to all Middle and High Schools in our five-parish area through our Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) program.  To date, we have donated AEDs to the schools in three of our parishes as well as heart-related training resources (CPR Mannequins and Training Materials) to a fourth parish whose AED needs had already been met.

We are now raising funds to extend this program to Beauregard Parish schools, part of the five-parish coverage area served by CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital and our CMN program.

Marcus was given a second chance at life because of an AED. You can help us give all students the same chance by making a donation to our Children’s Miracle Network efforts at CHRISTUS St. Patrick Hospital.

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