Project ADAM

Weatherford ISD is working with Project ADAM to refine protocols in cases of cardiac emergencies.

Project ADAM is a national program that began in 1999 after a Wisconsin teenager, Adam Lemel, died of sudden cardiac arrest. His parents collaborated with Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Herma Heart Institute to establish the program.

Sudden cardiac arrest is when the heart stops beating and blood stops flowing to the brain and other organs. Normal heart rhythm can be achieved with CPR and the use of an automated external defibrillator, according to the Project ADAM website.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 70-90 percent of people that suffer cardiac arrest out of a hospital die before making it to the hospital.

WISD has already had emergency response teams at each campus, but the processes are being improved, Student Services Executive Director Lynn Pool said.

“We saw that there were things that we could add to our current processes that would make us compliant and certified in Project ADAM,” Pool said. “All of that is good for kids and is indicative of the mission statement of Weatherford ISD to keep all our students and all our staff in a safe, nurturing environment.”

Only a few adjustments to the protocol were needed to meet the Project ADAM requirements, WISD Health Services Nurse Coordinator Shealee Mitchell said. For example, Project ADAM requires that everyone has a designated role in case of an emergency, such as a designated person to call for emergency services and someone to assess the patient.

In addition, Project ADAM requires that an automated external defibrillator is present during any emergency incident outside of the nursing clinic, Mitchell said. Signage to direct someone to a defibrillator is also part of the protocol.

WISD is also sharing its protocols with its emergency medical services provider as part of Project ADAM, Mitchell said.

“It’s just a smoother transition when we have to have EMS on property to care for our kiddos and staff,” Mitchell said.

The district designation from Project ADAM as a whole is planned to be finalized by the end of September, Mitchell said. One of the final tasks before submitting applications was completing an emergency response team drill.

Staff and substitute teachers are also trained in hands-only CPR and bleeding control, Pool said.

To learn more about Project ADAM, visit

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