The objective of this review is to establish a framework about the educational activities of the Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) National Committee of the Saudi Heart Association (SHA) and determine if it has had any effect on the survival rate in daily hospital work. Further, the review puts forward recommendations regarding the key to success for future implementations and improvement in the outcome of heart attacks in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA).
Cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) was introduced into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in the 1980s. The birth of CPR in the Kingdom was conducted by the American Heart Association (AHA) provision of the first instructor course in Basic Cardiac Life Support (BCLS) and Advanced Cardiac Life Support (ACLS) in the spring of 1984. This educational activity was initiated by the Postgraduate Center of the College of Medicine and currently is a function of the Saudi Heart Association (SHA). The National Heart Center (NHC) continually expands its activities. The number of courses organized, conducted, and reported herein totaled 459 for providers and instructors in BCLS and advanced cardiac life support. This resulted in certification of 916 and 204 instructors in basic and advanced CPR respectively. There were 80 centers established in the Kingdom over the span of 15 years. They all provide BCLS courses; only 13 provide advanced cardiac life support courses. The SHA issued a total of 84,659 certificates.