The National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative (NCAC) is a collaboration of peer organizations, who are stakeholders or actors in the effort to reduce the societal burden of cardiac arrest.  



Update on Activities

March 2019

The Steering Committee of the National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative provides this report on current activities related to the recommendations of the IOM Report: Strategies to Improve Cardiac Arrest Survival – A Time to Act. 

Recommendation 8. Create a National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative.

The Steering Committee of the Collaborative reached out to the US Department of Health and Human Services.  It has developed a strong liaison with Admiral Brett Giroir, the Assistant Secretary for Health at the US Department of Health and Human Services.  He agrees that the Collaborative’s work on Recommendation #1 is vital to the health of the United States.  He has established a goal of developing a fully functioning out-of-hospital cardiac arrest registry by January 2021.  He has also established a goal of doubling survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrests by January 2024. These goals further strengthen our commitment as a Steering Committee to ensure each of the report’s recommendations are fulfilled by working together in a collaboration with all stakeholders.

With the recent inclusion of a representative from the US Department of Health and Human Services on the Steering Committee this recommendation has now been fully implemented.  The Steering Committee of the Collaborative meets bi-weekly by teleconference to ensure our momentum continues.

Recommendation 1. Establish a National Cardiac Arrest Registry. 

After extensive discussion at meetings in New Orleans and San Diego, the recommendations of the National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative are that the National Cardiac Arrest Registry should be comprised of two parts comprised of an out-of-hospital and an in-hospital component.  We recommend expansion of the Cardiac Arrest Registry to Enhance Survival (CARES), currently administered by Emory University, as the core of the out-of-hospital registry, and Get With the Guidelines, from the American Heart Association, as the in-hospital registry.

The participants at the meeting collectively determined that it will be both simpler and have a larger potential impact on cardiac arrest survival if the initial efforts are focused on developing the out-of-hospital registry.  The Steering Committee has been working closely with Dr. Bryan McNally, who is the director of CARES, and he supports this approach.

CARES is currently supported by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association, Emory University, The Heart Rescue Project and Physio-Control. CARES currently has 23 statewide registries.  The sponsors are currently evaluating options to provide funding to increase coverage to all fifty states. 

Once coverage is available for the entire country, we will have better data available to allow for reaching the Assistant Secretaries goal of doubling the rate of survival from out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

Recommendation 2.  Foster a Culture of Action Through Public Awareness and Training.

June 1 to June 7, 2019 is National CPR and AED Awareness Week. As part of our collaborative efforts we ask that all members and supporters of the collaborative plan to raise awareness of the importance of CPR and AEDs to the public. Last year the collaborative worked to reach consensus surrounding messaging. While the way we communicate to the public may vary across our organizations, we feel it is important that we have a consistent and clear message surrounding the theme of a “willingness to act.” Laypersons (our immediate responders) are a key component of cardiac arrest survival and ensuring the public has the willingness and confidence to “do something” will lead to better outcomes. The tag line “Every Second Counts in Cardiac Arrest” was highlighted as part of our messaging work last year and we hope all collaborators will continue to help spread this important message widely as well as share your plans and activities across the collaborative.

All collaborators and supporters are encouraged to share any materials, graphics, or tag lines that they would allow other collaborators to use.  Please be clear about copyright and your desire for attribution, but understand that member organizations are most likely to be able to use unrestricted material.  Our ability to echo one another and to provide the public with consistent messages from multiple directions is a strength of the collaborative.

Annual Meeting of the National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative 

Our next annual meeting will be at the Cardiac Arrest Survival Summit, December 10 -13, 2019, in Seattle, Washington.  Please make plans now to attend.  Specific times for the meeting will be shared in the future. Event information is available here.

If you would like to learn more about the National Cardiac Arrest Collaborative please e-mail us at or visit our website here. Saving a life Starts With You.