Infant CPR kits to be distributed in Clark County

Published 5:23 pm Monday, January 9, 2023

In the aftermath of the recent events concerning Buffalo Bills player Damar Hamlin on Monday Night Football, the nation has suddenly become more alert to the importance of cardiac care.

Fortunately, the American Heart Association has several ways it is aiding local communities such as Winchester.

Recently, its infant CPR training initiative – made possible by funding from the Kentucky Association of Health Plans – began targeting several communities for the winter time, including Clark County.

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“Heart disease is the number one birth defect for kids. One in a hundred kids are affected”, said Mike Turner, the organization’s community impact director. “That’s something else that we try to make people more aware of.”

According to a news release from the American Heart Association, the initiative launched in May 2022 and has already provided approximately 3,000 infant CPR Anytime® Training kits to neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) across 11 counties in the commonwealth. The $150,000 investment from the Kentucky Association of Health Plants (KAHP) will allow AHA to provide an additional 4,350 kits to new parents in counties yet to be served, focused on reaching rural communities across the state.

The kits are delivered to healthcare facilities, which can then have them distributed to new parents.

Additional locations targeted for winter 2022-23 include Estill County, Harlan County, Madison County, Montgomery County, Nicholas County, and Rowan County.

“It’s important with babies because they have an increased chance of choking,” Turner said.

The winter months have also seen an increase in RSV, or respiratory syncytial virus, which can contagiously cause respiratory tract infections.

Each kit includes an inflatable mannequin and video course, teaching lifesaving infant CPR in as little as 20 minutes. The kit is co-branded with the American Academy of Pediatrics. Research has shown that the CPR Anytime Program is ideal for learning the core skills of CPR, or cardiopulmonary resuscitation if you can’t complete an in-person course. Though no course completion card is offered, an Infant CPR Anytime Certificate of Participation is available for download.

While education can be gained in a short time, it’s even more imperative that CPR takes place right away when needed under emergency scenarios.

Without proper care from CPR, brain damage could occur within minutes, and the probability of being saved may decrease.

One of the reasons why communities such as Winchester were targeted for distribution is because of the need for quick response time.

“If it’s in a rural community, even if they call an ambulance to get help, the response time can take longer,” Turner says.

He added that a fast run time with CPR – performed with chest compressions – is the key to survival for someone who has suffered from cardiac arrest or another heart issue.

Some Clark County locations – such as Bluegrass Community and Mountain Comprehensive Care Center – have already begun asking for and receiving donations.

Additional kits are still available by requests from hospitals, healthcare providers, clinics, health departments, and more.

Any interested in requesting kits can contact Kentuckiana Community Impact Director Tracy Monks at for more information.

Also, to those that would like to participate, the 2023 Joe Reed Memorial Heart Walk in Clark County will take place at Clark Regional Medical Center on April 22 at 9:30 a.m. The website is