CMS Connect Login:

Login Assistance

To The Beat of “Stayin’ Alive”

CMS hosts legislators for hands-only CPR
By Scott Warner

The Chicago Medical Society and State Senate President John Cullerton have launched a public health initiative to educate legislators and the public on the importance of bystander CPR via Project SMILE (Saving More Illinois Lives through Education). Project SMILE disseminates information about cardiopulmonary resuscitation, with the goal of teaching bystanders how to give CPR to adult cardiac arrest victims outside the hospital, before paramedics arrive. The technique is easy to learn and saves lives.

To help kick off this initiative, Senator Cullerton joined CMS President Kenneth G. Busch, MD, at the CMS Building on April 10, to engage in a hands-only CPR and AED workshop for legislators and their staff. Overseeing the workshop was CMS Trustee Vemuri Murthy, MD. “Any CPR is better than no CPR,” Dr. Murthy emphasized, pointing out to attendees that in addition to saving lives, immediate CPR can also minimize brain damage.

Dr. Murthy founded Project SMILE in 2010 as a community public health initiative by CMS in collaboration with the Illinois State Medical Society, based on information from the American Heart Association (AHA). Tina and Dennis McCauley, SMILE volunteers and owners of Learn for Life CPR in Bensenville, participated in the workshop. Before the hands-on session, which used CPR manikins and automated external defibrillators (AEDs), Dr. Murthy made some observations on the importance of CPR. ”In the United States, sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death, yet most Americans feel helpless to act during a cardiac emergency. Only about 40% of sudden cardiac arrest victims get the needed help on the spot before the emergency team arrives.”

Dr. Murthy said that hands-only CPR is more appealing to many people than conventional CPR where both chest compressions and ventilations (either mouth-to-mouth or with a breathing device) are advocated. “It’s 100 compressions per minute in the center of the chest to the beat of the Bee Gees’ disco classic, ‘Stayin’ Alive.’”

Dr. Murthy commended State Sen. John Mulroe, chair of the Senate Public Health Committee, for his championing of HB 3724, which added CPR and AED training to health education programs in high schools, and was signed into law last June. Dr. Murthy also pointed out that resuscitation science clearly indicates that hands-only CPR is as effective as conventional CPR in cases of adult cardiac arrest.

Attending the workshop were: State Treasurer Michael Frerichs; Cook County Board Commissioner John Fritchey and staff Bridget Kilmer; State Rep. Ann Williams and Colleen Smith, chief of staff (COS); State Sen. John Mulroe; Eric Carlson, COS for State Rep. Sara Feigenholtz; Molly Chirico and Moira Dolehide, staff for Senator Cullerton; Hon. Consul General of Nepal; Marvin A. Brustin; Vincent Bufalino, MD, senior VP, cardiovascular services, Advocate Healthcare; and Mark E. Peysakhovich, director of government relations, Illinois, AHA.

For more information, contact: Haydee Nascimento at 312-670-2550;


Document Actions

Join CMS

Why join?  The Chicago Medical Society offers many benefits, including career placement, advocacy, networking, and member to member collaboration. Click here to explore all the benefits of membership.

CMS Connect

CMS Connect is an exclusive community that allows members to discuss the issues impacting their practices today. Visit CMS Connect today.