Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest affects over 350,000 people in the U.S. annually, but only 10.8% survive. Bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) improves survival, but rates of training in the U.S. are low. It is recently required by law in 39 U.S. states that high school students learn CPR. However, there is great variability nationwide in how, by whom, and when students are taught. Additionally, current methods of teaching CPR use outdated pedagogical strategies and expensive yet low-technology devices to teach this life-saving skill. Previous data indicates that only 30% of students are able to perform high-quality CPR, as measured by compression depth and rate, 6 months following in-school training. The purpose of this project is to create a comprehensive interactive digital media (IDM) package to teach CPR in high school classrooms. Specifically, this package will include a live-action, interactive digital film depicting a dramatic cardiac arrest, a ?CPR Cube? non-linear spring device that mimics the properties of the human chest and measures and displays chest compression quality (rate and depth), and interactivity between the CPR cube and the digital film to allow real-time display of CPR quality during the interactive film. The interactive film will ask students questions with two answer choices, using interactivity to teach the steps of CPR rather than a lecture. Additionally, students will perform CPR on the CPR Cube while watching the film (as the heroes of the film perform CPR), and receive real-time feedback as to compression quality, generated by the sensors in the CPR cube and transmitted to the digital film display. This method of teaching hands-only CPR harnesses the power of learning theory, modern digital media, and interactivity to create a video game-like experience for teens. Focus groups with high school students have suggested that an immersive, interactive digital film experience is more enjoyable and engaging than traditional CPR training, thereby promoting improved learning and skill retention. Our goal is to develop a product that is approximately 1/10th the cost and 1/5th the size of current low-technology CPR mannequins, thereby offering a low-cost, low-profile alternative. Once developed, this technology has the potential to become the predominant method for training CPR to the over 12 million people trained in CPR annually in the U.S., which will directly impact lives saved following cardiac arrest.

Public Health Relevance

Cardiac arrest kills hundreds of thousands of Americans each year, but survival is improved with bystander cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR). CPR is required by law to be taught in U.S. high schools across the nation, but instructional methods are outdated, non-standardized, and ineffective. We propose building an interactive digital media package that combines the drama of a filmed live-action cardiac arrest scenario with a novel 'CPR Cube' device, to improve learning of CPR skills that should translate into improved survival from cardiac arrest.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Institute of General Medical Sciences (NIGMS)
Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Grants - Phase I (R41)
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Special Emphasis Panel (ZRG1)
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Beck, Lawrence A
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Coram Technologies, Inc.
United States
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