Special to the News-Journal

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many hospitals reduced or halted classes for parents of newborns. The American Heart Association (AHA), the world’s leading nonprofit organization focused on heart and brain health for all, is bridging the gaps in parent education by donating 240 Infant CPR Anytime kits to Christus Good Shepherd Medical Center in Longview.

Infant CPR Anytime is for new parents, grandparents, babysitters, nannies and anyone else who wants to learn infant CPR and basic first aid but does not need a course completion card to meet a job requirement.

The kits contain everything needed to learn the life-saving skills of infant CPR and infant choking relief in about 20 minutes at home.

Instruction is in Spanish and English. The kits are typically used in hospital labor and delivery programs, including NICUs (neonatal intensive care units), to teach skills to new parents.

“Our goal is to get these kits into the hands of new parents, providing a basic skill level and confidence for handling emergencies,” said Krista Sharp, corporate development director over east Texas.

During an emergency, if CPR is started before EMS arrives, the outcome is greatly improved. With every minute that passes without CPR and defibrillation, the chances of survival decrease by 7% to 10%.

“We want to support our families and equip them with the tools they need,” said Metosha Brantley, director of Women’s and Children’s Services, Christus Good Shepherd Medical Center-Longview. “Providing this life-saving education and resources to new parents will not only bolster their confidence but will also ensure they are prepared for an emergency.”