Rep. Bacon’s sudden cardiac arrest awareness bill passes the House


Ron Bacon


STATEHOUSE — State Representative Ron Bacon (R-Chandler) has authored a bill to help protect student athletes and raise awareness of sudden cardiac among this demographic. Today, the bill was passed by the House of Representatives with bipartisan support and a vote of 87-9.


Specifically, this legislation adds athletic trainers to the definition of “health care provider.” It also requires the Department of Education (DOE) to disseminate guidelines, information sheets and forms to schools so that they can inform and educate coaches, student athletes, parents and legal guardians of the nature and risk of sudden cardiac arrest.


At the post-secondary level, the Commission on Higher Education will also be required to disseminate such documents to the educational institution’s athletic department to inform their coaches and student athletes.


As a result of this bill, any high school athlete who is suspected of experiencing a symptom of sudden cardiac arrest would have to be removed from the athletic activity at the time symptom is identified. The student could not return to play until their parent or legal guardian has been notified and they have provided permission to return. The same is true of university athletes except they have to get permission from the team’s or postsecondary educational institution’s athletic trainer or physician before returning to play. Under current law, high school and university athletes and their families do not have to be informed of the signs of sudden cardiac arrest prior to playing a sport.


“Each day, this medical emergency affects about 16 people under the age of 18,” said Rep. Bacon. “Here in Indiana, and across the country, we literally have students collapsing during high school and university sports games. Having worked in the healthcare industry for over 40 years, I felt compelled to take the lead on this issue, and I am honored to have the American Heart Association’s full support on this legislation as I work to increase awareness of this issue.”


In addition, this legislation would require each school corporation and accredited nonpublic school to include instruction in cardiopulmonary resuscitation and use of an automated external defibrillator in their high school health education curriculum.


The bill will now be considered by the Senate.


For more information on HB 1290, please visit




Rep. Bacon (R-Chandler) represents portions of Warrick, Pike and Spencer counties.


  1. The parents should have to provide proof that a licensed practitioner has cleared the student to return to participation in athletics, instead of just signing off themselves. Highschool athletes’ parents are a rabid bunch, and I am speaking from experience. All five of my kids were athletes, and they all got very thorough physicals yearly, not the cursory ones required for participation. If a problem appeared between physicals, it was dealt with before the kid returned to practice.
    As for AEDs, are they required to be present at all sanctioned athletic events? If not, they should be.

  2. Had not heard that our Representative had been arrested !

    That ought to fix his Bacon !

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