Georgia laws in place to help young athletes

Many of us were watching Monday night's football game between the Buffalo Bills and the...
Many of us were watching Monday night's football game between the Buffalo Bills and the Cincinnati Bengals, when Buffalo defensive back Damar Hamlin’s heart stopped following a tackle.(KALB)
Published: Jan. 3, 2023 at 7:10 PM EST
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ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - There are laws in Georgia to prevent and treat a player if they go into cardiac arrest.

The Georgia High School Association requires coaches to be CPR certified and for AED devices to be accessible at all games. In the program’s constitution, they outline the state’s position.

By law, coaches and athletes are required to learn about early warning signs and how to recognize sudden cardiac arrest.

George Willborn watched Monday night’s Bills-Bengals game. He said he’s praying for Buffalo Bills Safety Damar Hamlin.

“When you hear that there is CPR being administered on the field, you know it’s been taken to a new level,” said Willborn.

Hamlin suffered cardiac arrest. first responders flooded the field. Dr. Arthur Reitman, Chief of Inpatient Cardiovascular Services, Wellstar Health System, with the American Heart Association said the first responder’s quick reaction likely saved Hamlin’s life.

“It’s so imperative that we accomplish that work for the heart when it has been temporarily damaged,” said Dr. Reitman.

The American Heart Association found that 70% of cardiac incidents happen outside of the home. Dr. Reitman said by learning CPR, you could be the person to save a stranger.

“This could happen to such a high-level athlete, it raises our awareness, if this could happen to someone like that. It could happen to any of us,” said Dr. Reitman.

Jasper Jewell, the Athletics director for Atlanta Public Schools said his coaches receive CPR training every year.

“You can never take things like that for granted because you never know when you’ll need to use those,” said Jewell