Nurse raises money for defibrillators for Casey schools

August 12, 2004|BRENDA S. EDWARDS

LIBERTY - Through the efforts of a woman interested in the health of Casey County middle and high school students, the two schools have received automatic external defibrillators.

Debbie Laman, Liberty, raised enough money through a state grant and businesses and individuals in the county to buy three defibrillators. She presented them Monday night to high school Principal Tim Goodlett and middle school Principal Terry Price.

Laman, a registered nurse in Somerset, told the Board of Education she was concerned about the students, especially the athletes, after hearing about young people dying after playing sports. She began raising money after talking with the two principals.

"I got overwhelmed after I raised the funds," said Laman. "I decided policies and procedures were needed (concerning the equipment)." She suggested calling the project Code Kevin, after a young athlete who died.


School nurse Kay King will train the staff on using the equipment at no cost, however, there is a $35 fee for books, classes and cards. Five people have volunteered to take the training, she said.

King has acquired information on the purchase of a training video which can be incorporated into the cardiopulmonary resuscitation training that is already offered.

"We hope to have enough personnel trained before the football season begins," said King. A committee also is needed to handle the program.

Laman said a program coordinator is needed to keep the equipment up to date. The defibrillators need to be checked every six months at a cost of $25.

Board member Dinah Burton said $3 million in federal grants are available to purchase the equipment.

Laman said the campaign for the defibrillators has to be a community effort. "We need to look into the grants." If money is secured, defibrillators will be purchased for each school.

Superintendent Linda Hatter said the school personnel has discussed where the portable units will be located at sports events.

She praised Laman for her efforts to get the equipment.

"Had it not been for your efforts, I don't think we would be here discussing this tonight," Hatter told Laman.

Laman said the units will be delivered to the schools after they have been checked to make sure they are in appropriate working condition.

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