American Heart Association expands infant CPR kit initiative to reach largely rural communities through funding from Kentucky Association of Health Plans

FRANKORT, KY (December 28, 202) — The American Heart Association, a global force for healthier lives for all, and the Kentucky Association of Health Plans (KAHP), are excited to announce the expansion of their statewide infant CPR kit initiative, with a goal of reaching additional rural communities across Kentucky.

The kits are being delivered to healthcare facilities to distribute to new parents. Each kit includes an inflatable manikin and video course that teaches lifesaving infant CPR in as little as 20 minutes.

“Rural communities often face a critical shortage of healthcare professionals, which can negatively impact the care and resources they receive, leaving many people vulnerable to negative health outcomes and shortened lifespans,” said Ashley Sokoler, Executive Director of the American Heart Association in Kentuckiana. “That’s why it’s so important to make CPR training available to new parents in rural areas and provide the healthcare facilities they visit with the resources needed to implement training without causing additional strain on their staff.”

The initiative, launched in May 2022, has already provided 3,000 infant CPR Anytime® Training Kits to neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) in 11 Kentucky counties. The expansion, funded by a $150,000 investment from KAHP, allows the Association to provide an additional 4,350 kits to new parents in counties that have yet to be served.

Clint Kaho, President of Baptist Health La Grange, said he is grateful for the American Heart Association and the funds KAHP and its executive director, Tom Stephens, have provided to support this lifesaving initiative, which has already benefited numerous Baptist Health hospitals across the Commonwealth.

“This incredible donation of infant CPR kits allows us to respond to an education gap created by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Kaho said. “During the height of the pandemic, our on-site classes were paused, including CPR and First Aid education for parents of NICU babies. CPR demonstrations are now being given to parents in NICU rooms, and they can then take their kits home to practice and watch the video as needed.”

In addition to being a driving force in providing infant CPR education, Stephens will also serve as the chair of the 2023 Kentuckiana Heart Walk, which will be held on Sept. 16, 2023, at the Big Four Lawn in Louisville. The Heart Walk is the Association's premier event for raising funds to save lives from the country's No. 1 and No. 5 killers — heart disease and stroke.

infant CPR kit

To date, nearly 2,500 of the newly funded infant CPR kits have been distributed throughout 21 counties, including Bath, Bell, Boyd, Casey, Clark, Estill, Floyd, Garrard, Harlan, Hyden, Jackson, Johnson, Madison, Montgomery, Nicholas, Perry, Pike, Powell, Rockcastle, Rowan, and Warren.

Hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare providers interested in requesting kits can contact Kentuckiana Community Impact Director Tracy Monks at  for more information. To stay up to date on the Kentuckiana Heart Walk and other American Heart Association events and initiatives, visit and follow the Association (@heartkentucky) on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram.

Additional Resources


About the American Heart AssociationThe American Heart Association is a relentless force for a world of longer, healthier lives. We are dedicated to ensuring equitable health in all communities. Through collaboration with numerous organizations, and powered by millions of volunteers, we fund innovative research, advocate for the public’s health and share lifesaving resources. The Dallas-based organization has been a leading source of health information for nearly a century.

About the Kentucky Association of Health PlansKentucky Association of Health Plans is the trade organization representing the Kentucky health insurance community. KAHP is a leader on issues that strengthen the accessibility, value, and quality of health care in the Commonwealth. Members include Aetna, Anthem, CareSource, Humana, Passport Health Plan by Molina Healthcare, UnitedHealth Group and WellCare. For more information visit: or follow @kyhealthplans on Twitter.


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