15th Symposium on Education
Third Symposium on Space Weather


Space Weather in CPR classes? From Science to Practice!

Margaret Lynn Fowke, NOAA, Silver Spring, MD

If 5-15 minutes of space weather is introduced during CPR classes, how would the medical community respond?

Depending on the audience, the topic of space weather can take on different perspectives. Typically it is not a topic of discussion in the medical community. Within the medical community, the health risks from space weather are not well known nor understood but the health risks of space weather do need to be addressed. Many in the medical community are reluctant to attend a space weather seminar/class for various reasons, i.e., do not see a connection to hospital/clinic work and therefore view space weather as waste of their time, too busy or did not have environmental education during their medical or allied health training.

However, if space weather is incorporated within a medical setting comfortable to a medical participant, the health impacts of space weather can be viewed in a valuable manner. Given this, how would the medical community respond if space weather was incorporated during their annual/mandatory CPR recertification? Working as CPR instructor with local Montgomery County, Maryland American Red Cross Chapter, the introduction of space weather information was incorporated into CPR classes. Experts from the Space Environment Center (SEC) at NWS/NOAA assisted with the development of a pre/post space weather quiz and space weather lesson focusing on health impacts of solar flares. Before class, all participants are given a 10 question pre-test on space weather. During class, all participants are given 5-15 minutes of space weather lesson connections to health. After class all participants are given a 10 question post-test using same questions from the pre-test. The average pre-test score is 46.92 and post-test score is 83.85. It is usually during settings such as CPR classes that many medical participants begin to realize and understand the full impacts of using environmental information to protect health issues. Most frequently missed questions include: What is origin of space weather?, What is greatest hazard caused by space weather?, What is a geomagnetic storm, solar radiation storm, radio blackout.

Since many in the medical community have no idea about space weather issues or even that it can be a problem, this presents many opportunities for the space weather community to offer decision support/expert assistance, research & development, education and information to the medical community.

wrf recording  Recorded presentation

Joint Session 1, Educational Outreach Activities for Space Weather (Joint with 15th Symposium on Education and 3rd Symposium on Space Weather)
Monday, 30 January 2006, 4:00 PM-5:00 PM, A402

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