NEW Opioid Overdose Response Training to Empower High School Students to Help Save Lives Including Nasal Naloxone Spray

The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is launching the NEW Opioids Overdose Response Training as an enhancement to its successful High School cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and automated external defibrillator (AED) Program, FREE for high schools across Canada.

The training will teach students:

-What are opioids and how do   opioid overdoses happen
-What is Naloxone and how does it work
-Recognizing a suspected opioid overdose
-Responding to a suspected opioid overdose including calling 911
quickly, performing CPR if needed and giving nasal Naloxone spray

“The landscape of emergency response is changing in Canada due to the increase of opioid overdoses and we all have a role to play,” says Sandra Clarke, the ACT Foundation’s Executive Director. “Enhancing ACT’s High School CPR and AED Program with opioid awareness and response training is a next step in empowering youth to respond to life-threatening emergencies. This new program will see teachers training hundreds of thousands of students in how to respond to opioid-associated emergencies.”

The Public Health Agency of Canada reports that over 5,368 apparent opioid toxicity deaths occurred from January–September 2021. The majority (94%) of opioid overdose deaths happen by accident.  Young Canadians aged 15 to 24 are the fastest-growing population requiring hospital care from opioid overdoses.[1] ACT has received a contribution from Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program (SUAP) in support of the development and implementation of the module on Opioids Overdose Response Training.

“All corners of the country have felt the tragic consequences of the overdose crisis, which continues to affect individuals, families, and communities every day. The timely use of Naloxone for those experiencing an overdose can be life saving. To the ACT Foundation and all those who continue to make opioid overdose training available, and to the many people who are choosing to learn valuable skills that could save lives, we thank you,” says Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health (Health Canada), Hon. Carolyn Bennett.

The opioid-associated emergency module enables teachers (Train the Trainer model) to provide the theory portion of the education in an eLearning format to students as a self-paced learning tool. Teachers will then provide the practical training portion to their students in the classroom.

“The new module was developed based on a successful Ottawa pilot in 2019. Results from the pilot were extremely positive with strong interest and enthusiasm expressed by teachers and students,” says Dr. Michael Austin, ACT’s National Medical Director. “The opioid crisis is a complex issue and causes many of the opioid-related harms and deaths. ACT’s response to this crisis empowers high school teachers to add the Opioid Overdose Response Training to the current CPR training, enhancing students’ lifesaving toolbox. Recognizing a suspected opioid overdose and knowing how to respond can help save lives.”

Infographic: ACT High School Opioid Overdose Response Training

ACT’s overall goal is to see every high school student across Canada graduate with the skills and knowledge to save a life. To help achieve this goal, ACT receives the financial support from private and public organizations who believe in the positive impact ACT can play in Canada’s society.

“As a long-standing partner of the ACT Foundation, we’re proud of the impact they have had around CPR and AED education across the country – and are excited to see them enhance their program to include opioid awareness and overdose response training, an increasingly growing issue among today’s youth,” says Kiersten Combs, President, AstraZeneca Canada. “Empowering youth with these critical life-saving skills is incredibly important to helping save lives.”

“We applaud the efforts of the ACT Foundation as a pioneer in establishing free lifesaving training in high schools. It is an honour to participate as a National Health Partner, realizing CPR and AED training in over 1,800 high schools to date,” mentions Dr. Suna Avcil, Executive Medical Director, Amgen Canada.

About the ACT Foundation

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization establishing free CPR and AED training in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins and AED training units that schools need to deliver the program. High school teachers are trained to then teach lifesaving skills to their students as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth prior to graduation. The ACT High School CPR and AED Program is made possible with the support of its national health partners, AstraZeneca Canada and Amgen Canada. The ACT Foundation gratefully acknowledges the contribution of Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program (SUAP) for the ACT Opioid Overdose Response Training program.

Website: actfoundation.ca
Twitter: @actfoundation #ACT2Save
Facebook: @theactfoundation
Instagram: @actfoundation
YouTube: YouTube.com/theactfoundation

For more information about the ACT Foundation and the ACT Opioid Overdose Response Training contact:

Christian Ahuet
Senior Consultant
National Public Relations
cahuet@national.ca
Tel: 514-994-7496

Cristiane Doherty
Communications Manager
ACT Foundation
Cell: 613-799-927
cdoherty@actfoundation.ca

[1] https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/publications/healthy-living/canada-opioid-crisis-fact-sheet.html

Basketball coach saves student with CPR and an AED

A Grade 10 student is alive today thanks to the quick provision of CPR and the use of an AED by his basketball coach Mike Rowley, of St. Mother Teresa High School. Since 1994, the ACT Foundation has established free High School CPR and AED training Program in over 1,800 high schools across Canada.

Zachary Legault, ‘Zach’ as his friends call him, is an energetic student who loves sports. But at this school year’s basketball tryout – Zach’s heart stopped.

“I was adding names to my team shortlist when I saw a student come off the court hunched over,” says Coach Mike. “It was Zach, and he was gasping for air.” Suddenly Zach collapsed face-first on the floor sending an echoing thud across the gym. “My instincts kicked in. It was the ACT training,” says Mike, who told his Assistant Coach, Yvan, to call 911.

Coach Mike quickly assessed that Zach was unresponsive and not breathing. He began CPR and using the school’s AED, saved his student’s life.

“I can tell you as a mom, receiving the phone call was nothing short of traumatic.  But to hear over and over in the days that followed from paramedics, ER physicians, and the team of cardiologists, that had the coach not responded so quickly performing CPR and using the AED, Zach would not be with us today,” says Stephanie Muldoon, Zach’s mother.

Zach underwent open-heart surgery at the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO) to fix a previously unknown heart defect he has had since birth. Zach has made a full recovery.

Zach would like to see everyone empowered to save a life. “It can happen to a family member, a friend, it can happen to anyone around you. You wouldn’t expect a young athlete to have a cardiac arrest, but I’m an example of what can happen,” says Zach.

ACT RESCUE VIDEO: Zach’s Story

“The ACT Foundation coordinates the training of thousands of teachers enabling them to train hundreds of thousands of students across Canada every year in lifesaving skills,” says Sandra Clarke, the Foundation’s Executive Director.

“ACT set up the High School CPR Program at St. Mother Teresa High School in 1998, adding the AED training program for students in 2009.”

To date, 8,300 teachers across Canada are trained as CPR instructors for their students and 4.8 million students have learned how to save a life through the ACT High School CPR and Defibrillator Program. Many lives have been saved.

Partner and Community Quotes

AstraZeneca Canada, ACT National Health Partner
Kiersten Combs, President of AstraZeneca Canada
We’re proud to be a long-standing partner of the ACT Foundation – supporting its goal of establishing CPR and defibrillator training in Canadian high schools, providing youth with critical life-saving skills, and raising awareness of the importance of cardiovascular health,” says Kiersten Combs, President of AstraZeneca Canada. “Stories like Zach’s and the quick thinking of his coach Mike Rowley are a great reminder of the impact that initiatives like the ACT High School CPR Program can have by empowering teachers and students to help save lives.”

Amgen Canada, ACT National Health Partner
Dr. Suna Avcil, Executive Medical Director of Amgen Canada
“Amgen is honoured to support the ACT Foundation as a National Health Partner,” says Dr. Suna Avcil, Executive Medical Director of Amgen Canada. “Rescue stories are a testament to the quality of the program and the criticality of ensuring that the education community is equipped with the knowledge and skills to contribute. Together we will continue to advance excellence in science literacy, inspire the next generation, help educators to teach more effectively, and improve access to resources for teachers, students, and society at large.”

Hydro One, ACT Provincial Partner, Ontario
Jay Armitage, Vice President, Marketing & Communications, Hydro One
“We would like to commend Coach Mike for his quick instinct to put his first aid training into action. This real-life rescue demonstrates the importance of equipping young people and their teachers with the lifesaving skills necessary to build safe communities,” said Jay Armitage, Vice President, Marketing & Communications, Hydro One. “Thanks to his CPR and AED training received through the program, Coach Mike had the invaluable tools needed to act fast and save a life.”

Ottawa Catholic School Board, Participating School Board
Tom D’Amico, Director of Education, Ottawa Catholic School Board
“I’m proud of the actions by Coach Mike Rowley. Teachers enter the profession to make a difference in the lives of youth, and in this situation, thanks to his training and the availability of an AED in the school, he was able to save the life of a student athlete.”

About The ACT Foundation

The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is the national charitable organization establishing free CPR in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins and AED training units that schools need to deliver the program. High school teachers are trained to teach their students lifesaving skills as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth before graduation. More than 4.8 million youth have been trained in CPR by their teachers through this lifesaving program to date.

The ACT High School CPR and AED Program is made possible with the support of its National Health Partners AstraZeneca Canada and Amgen Canada and its provincial partner Hydro One.

Website:           actfoundation.ca
Twitter:            @actfoundation #ACT2Save
Facebook:        @theactfoundation
Instagram:       @actfoundation
YouTube:          YouTube.com/theactfoundation

The ACT Foundation
Cristiane Doherty, Communications Manager
Mobile: 613-799-9277
cdoherty@actfoundation.ca

 

ACT Foundation recognizes Amgen Canada with Community Champion Award

The ACT Foundation is proud to present Amgen Canada with ACT’s Community Champion Award in celebration of Amgen’s 5-year anniversary as a National Health Partner to the Foundation. ACT is honoured to bestow this award to a National Health Partner for assisting the Foundation as it strives to reach its goal that would see every Canadian high school student graduate with the skills and knowledge to save a life.

Through the work of the ACT Foundation in establishing free CPR training programs in Canadian high schools, more than 4.8 million students have been trained by their teachers to date, and many are saving lives in their communities.

In Canada, an estimated 35,000 people suffer out-of-hospital cardiac arrests each year. With 80 per cent of cardiac arrests occurring in homes and public places, empowering youth with CPR training as part of their high school education will help increase citizen CPR response rates and save lives.

“CPR is an essential life skill for all Canadians,” says Dr. Justin Maloney, an emergency physician at the Ottawa Hospital and ACT Foundation’s National Medical Director. “We are grateful for Amgen Canada’s continued support in helping the ACT Foundation bring this lifesaving program into Canadian high schools.”

Through the ACT High School CPR Program, students learn about the 4 ‘Rs’ of CPR. This includes Risk factor education on heart disease and stroke; how to Recognize a developing medical emergency like a heart attack, a cardiac arrest, or stroke; how to React including the importance of calling 911 and what to do until the ambulance arrives; and Resuscitate – CPR and how to use an AED. The program promotes students’ interest in science and health that can lead to enhanced career opportunities and help build Canadian innovation.

“Amgen is honoured to support the ACT Foundation for eight years to date and five years as a national health partner,” says Brian Heath, President of Amgen Canada. “The successful delivery of programs like this require collaboration. It is everyone’s responsibility to develop Canadian youth to be national and global citizens, equipped with the knowledge and skills to contribute meaningfully through their actions and behaviours. Together we take collective action to bridge the gap for Canadian students and help them make the connection between their interests and the value they can bring beyond the classroom.”

“We are proud to present the ACT Community Champion Award to Amgen Canada, whose support is so important to the ACT Foundation’s success in saving lives. We have made great strides with the support of our National Health Partners, along with our government, health, education, and community partners,” says Sandra Clarke, Executive Director and Founder of the ACT Foundation. “It is a wonderful example of a successful partnership between government, corporate citizens, a charitable foundation, and the community affecting positive change where we live, work, and play. By working together, we are making our communities healthier.”

About The ACT Foundation
The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation is the national charitable organization establishing free CPR in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins and AED training units that schools need to deliver the program. High school teachers are trained to then teach lifesaving skills to their students as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth prior to graduation.

The ACT High School CPR and AED Program is made possible with the support of its National Health Partners Amgen Canada and AstraZeneca Canada.

Website: actfoundation.ca
Twitter: @actfoundation #ACT2Save
Facebook: @theactfoundation
Instagram: @actfoundation
YouTube: YouTube.com/theactfoundation

Contacts:

The ACT Foundation
Cristiane Doherty
Communications Manager
Mobile: 613-799-9277
cdoherty@actfoundation.ca

Amgen Canada
Natasha Bond
Corporate Affairs
Office: 905-285-3007
Mobile: 416-801-4459
natasha.bond@amgen.com

ACT Foundation enhancing high school CPR training with opioid awareness and overdose response training

(Ottawa, ON, March 29, 2021) The Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation announced today it is enhancing the ACT High School CPR and AED Program with an Opioids Overdose Response Training Module.

Support through a contribution from Health Canada’s Substance Use and Addictions Program (SUAP) will enable the ACT Foundation to expand its Ottawa pilot of the opioids awareness and response training to hundreds of high schools across Canada, empowering thousands of students every year.

The ACT High School CPR and AED Program is well established in high schools across the country. Enhancing the program with opioids awareness and response training is a natural next step in equipping youth to respond to life threatening emergencies they may encounter. Knowing the signs and symptoms of an opioid overdose and how to respond can help save lives.

The opioids module will follow ACT’s CPR program delivery model. High school teachers will be trained to teach students to recognize the signs of an opioids overdose, the importance of calling 911 quickly, and how to respond with the use of Naloxone nasal spray, and perform CPR when necessary.

“ACT has successfully delivered the High School CPR and AED Program in high schools across Canada. It is a natural progression to add opioid overdose response training,” says Dr. Justin Maloney, National Medical Director and Chair, ACT Foundation. “We want to empower students and teachers by adding to their lifesaving toolbox.”

“We are really pleased to receive support from Health Canada, enabling the ACT Foundation to expand the opioids overdose response training to thousands of young Canadians through the school program,” says Sandra Clarke, the ACT Foundation’s Executive Director. “This is what ACT does. We empower high school students to save lives.”

The ACT Foundation

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization establishing free CPR and AED training in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins and AED training units that schools need to deliver the program. High school teachers are trained to then teach lifesaving skills to their students as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth prior to graduation. The ACT High School CPR and AED Program is made possible with the support of its national partners AstraZeneca Canada and Amgen Canada. The ACT Foundation gratefully acknowledges the financial support of Health Canada for the ACT Opioid Overdose Response Training implementation.

Website: actfoundation.ca
Twitter: @actfoundation #ACT2Save
Facebook: @theactfoundation
Instagram: @actfoundation
YouTube: YouTube.com/theactfoundation

For more information about the ACT Foundation and the ACT Opioid Overdose Response Training contact:

Cristiane Doherty
Communications Manager
The ACT Foundation
cdoherty@actfoundation.ca
Cell: 613-799-9277

This CPR month, celebrate Madeleine’s life – Empower all Outaouais youth with lifesaving skills

This CPR month, celebrate Madeleine’s life – Empower all Outaouais youth with lifesaving skills

October, 28 2015 – At the age of 19, Lydia Fréchette saved her five year old sister’s life, Madeleine, with the CPR she learned in high school.

This month of November, ACT, in collaboration with the Fréchette family invites everyone to participate in its Outaouais fundraising campaign to bring our lifesaving CPR and defibrillation training to the 20 high schools. Thanks to this initiative, more than 3,000 students will graduate with the lifesaving skills to help a classmate, a family member, or a member of their community.

We invite you to donate and share our fundraising page (french website) with the members of your community on your social media channels.

How you can donate:

Donate Online (French Website)
or
Contact the ACT Foundation at 1-800-465-5553, or by e-mail: act@actfoundation.ca

Defibrillator training coming to BC communities this month, initiative will result in around 6,300 students trained each year!

Defibrillator training coming to BC communities this month, initiative will result in around 6,300 students trained each year!

June 22, 2015 – This month of June, teachers fromthe School District 68, Nanaimo-Ladysmith, School District 37, Delta, School District 54 Bulkley Valley in Smithers, School District 23 Central Okanagan in Kelowna, School District 73 Kamloops/Thompson, School District 8 Creston, School District 52 Prince Rupert and School District 75 Mission have received their Automated External Defibrillator (AED ) instructor training, as an enhancement to the ACT High School CPR program. This initiative will result in around 6,300 students trained each year by their teachers to use these lifesaving skills.

This program was made possible thanks to the support of our community partners: British Columbia Emergency Health Services (BCEHS), British Columbia Ambulance Service (BCAS), RBC Royal Bank, Interior Savings Credit Union, and thanks to the support provided by our national health partners : AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada Inc., Sanofi Canada.

Our national health partners AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada and Sanofi Canada are also committed to our goal of promoting health and empowering Canadians across the country to save lives.

By the end of the 2014-2015 school year, 320 000 students will have been trained throughout Canada to add to our total of 2.9 million youth trained through the ACT Program to save lives!

More than 2,300 students from the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region will be trained to save lives every year

More than 2, 300 students from the Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean region will be trained to save lives every year

Tomorrow, on the 8th of May, we will be at the École Secondaire Jean-Gauthier, in Alma, QC for the official launch of the CPR and AED high school program in the region of Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean.

Thanks to this initiative, more than 2,300 students from 16 schools from the communities of Alma, Jonquière, Roberval and Chicoutimi will be trained every year to save lives by their teachers!

Thanks to our community partner, Rio Tinto Alcan for their generous contribution towards this initiative. We would also like to thank the Government of Quebec, as well as our health partners, AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada and Sanofi Canada for their support of the program throughout Quebec.

ACT Foundation Aims to Empower Peel-Halton High School Students With Life-Saving Skills

Mississauga, ON, May 12, 2014 – Today, the Advanced Coronary Treatment (ACT) Foundation announced its new campaign – Skills 4 Life: Empowering Peel-Halton Students with Life-Saving CPR and Defibrillator Skills – which aims to raise $350,000 in the Peel-Halton region. The goal? Providing more than 18,000 high school students each year with life-saving Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and Automated External Defibrillator (AED) skills before they graduate.

“Each and every day, many Canadians experience a cardiovascular event. These events can happen anywhere, at any time and immediate response is critical,” said Sandra Clarke, ACT Foundation Executive Director. “Our goal is to empower youth with life-saving skills, so that they can take charge and help in an emergency.”

According to the Heart and Stroke Foundation, early CPR combined with early defibrillation can increase survival rates for cardiac arrest victims by up to 75 per cent.

“I am a long-time advocate of citizen CPR and defibrillation training,” says campaign co-chair Dr. Dave Williams. “From my university student days as a CPR Instructor, to leading the implementation of an AED program at NASA and taking the first defibrillator into space as an astronaut, I am very proud as President and CEO of Southlake Regional Health Centre to play a key role in supporting this exciting program for our schools and youth.”

Skills 4 Life: Empowering Peel-Halton Students with Life-Saving CPR and Defibrillator Skills

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization that provides free CPR and AED programs to Canadian high schools, with over 2.6 million students trained to date through ACT’s innovative High School CPR Program. It relies on partners and program funders for financial and leadership support.

“With the support of ACT’s partners we have been able to integrate this life-saving program in over 1,600 high schools across Canada, but we aren’t finished yet,” said Clarke. “Our new campaign – Skills 4 Life – aims to set up the program in 70 schools in the Peel-Halton region.”

A founding partner of the ACT program, AstraZeneca Canada has pledged $50,000 in support of the ACT’s new campaign, and is working with the Foundation to help it reach its goal. The Skills 4 Life campaign kicks-off today, May 12, 2014, and will run for 90 days, with a goal of fundraising $350,000 before the start of the 2014/2015 school year. The funding is needed to provide schools with mannequins, AED training units, and teacher training as CPR and AED Instructors, enabling them to deliver the program to students each year.

“As a founding partner, we’re proud to have worked with the ACT Foundation right from the outset of its high school CPR program. We believe in its mission to empower youth with the skills and knowledge to save lives,” said Elaine Campbell, President, AstraZeneca Canada. “At AstraZeneca, we also believe we have an important role to play in helping to build strong, healthy communities by supporting organizations like the ACT Foundation. We are encouraging other businesses across the Peel-Halton Region to help make a difference too, by supporting Skills 4 Life.”

National High School CPR and Defibrillator Program

  • More than 2.6 million Canadian youth in over 1,600 schools across the country have been trained through the ACT High School CPR Program. ACT is now adding defibrillation as an enhancement to the CPR Program already in place in these schools.
  • Over 6,000 teachers in Canada are trained as CPR instructors and ACT has already donated more than 50,000 mannequins to high schools, ensuring 1:1 mannequin / student ratio.

“We have received hundreds of stories where youth have reacted quickly and taken the right steps to save lives,” said Clarke. “These are incredibly moving stories of youth who have saved their mother or father, a sister or brother, or even a complete stranger.”

About the ACT Foundation

The ACT Foundation is the national charitable organization that is establishing free CPR and AED programs in Canadian high schools. The program is built on ACT’s award-winning community-based model of partnerships and support, whereby ACT finds local partners who donate the mannequins, AED training units, and teacher training that schools need to set up the program. High school teachers then teach CPR and how to use a defibrillator to their students as a regular part of the curriculum, reaching all youth prior to graduation. In Ontario, ACT is working in partnership with the Ontario government. ACT’s health partners who are committed to bringing the program to the Peel-Halton region and to high schools across Canada are AstraZeneca Canada, Pfizer Canada and Sanofi.

About AstraZeneca Canada’s Partnership with ACT

As a founding partner of the ACT Foundation, AstraZeneca has committed more than $2 million since the Foundation’s inception in 1985 as a core and sustaining partner. The company’s important commitment is further reflected in its role as a board member of the Foundation. Along with the Foundation’s national health partners Sanofi and Pfizer Canada, AstraZeneca continues to honour its commitment to ACT’s efforts across Canada through financial support and ongoing guidance.

About AstraZeneca

AstraZeneca is a global, innovation-driven biopharmaceutical business that focuses on the discovery, development and commercialisation of prescription medicines, primarily for the treatment of cardiovascular, metabolic, respiratory, inflammation, autoimmune, oncology, infection and neuroscience diseases. AstraZeneca operates in over 100 countries and its innovative medicines are used by millions of patients worldwide. The company’s Canadian headquarters are located in Mississauga, Ontario.

As part of AstraZeneca’s commitment to improving the health and quality of life of Canadians, the company collaborates with community-based organizations in three key areas – to stimulate an interest in science among Canadian youth, strengthen capabilities and capacity within our healthcare system, and improve the mental and emotional well-being of disconnected and vulnerable youth ages 10 to 19 through AstraZeneca’s Young Health Program. For more information on AstraZeneca please visit: www.astrazeneca.ca.