Project ADAM (Automated Defibrillators in Adam's Memory) aims to prevent sudden cardiac arrest in children and teens through education and life-saving programs.
Project ADAM began in 1999 after a series of sudden deaths among high school athletes in southeastern Wisconsin. Many of these deaths appear due to ventricular fibrillation, a condition in which the ventricles cannot pump blood into the body.
After Adam Lemel, a 17-year-old Whitefish Bay, WI, high school student collapsed and died while playing basketball, Adam's parents — Patty Lemel and Joe Lemel — along with David Ellis, a childhood friend of Adam's, collaborated with Children's Hospital of Wisconsin to create this program in Adam's memory.
Learn more about Project Adam from this May 31, 2014 article in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
What does Project ADAM do?
The project helps schools in Wisconsin and across the nation implement programs to make automated external defibrillators (AEDs) available. Our programs also aim to support schools in being prepared for a cardiac emergency through staff CPR and AED training, student CPR education, fundraising ideas and support and sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) awareness education for students, staff and families. An AED is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses the potentially life threatening cardiac problems. The project also is involved in research and advocacy efforts.
What is an AED?
An AED (automated external defibrillator) is a portable electronic device that automatically diagnoses potentially life threatening cardiac problems. A shock delivered by an AED within 3-5 minutes may save these lives. Survival rates decrease up to 10% with each minute of delay.
Who does Project ADAM serve?
More than 800 Wisconsin schools or school districts have been served by Project ADAM. In addition, Project ADAM is working to establish affiliate sites across the country to help all schools become equipped to handle a sudden cardiac incident. There are Project ADAM affiliate sites in Atlanta, Philadelphia, Alabama, Florida, Michigan, Illinois, Texas, Tennessee and Washington with several additional sites in process. It is easy to become a Project ADAM school or affiliate site.
Expertise and leadership
Medical directors around the nation have adopted Project ADAM as an extension of cardiac care into schools and communities. If your hospital wants to reach schools through AED and CPR programs, please contact us to learn about becoming an affiliate.
The project also provides leadership experience and expertise as a community, state and national resource, and helps create partnerships and the sharing of information.
Real life rescue with an AED
In a situation where someone is in sudden cardiac arrest, every second counts. Having an AED available can be the difference between life and death. Watch a news story or read a blog about a 3-year-old Wisconsin girl who was saved by an AED and the fundraising event held as a result to support Project ADAM.
Is your school prepared for a cardiac emergency?
Watch videos that explain sudden cardiac arrest, explain how to prepare to respond to a cardiac emergency and walk through the steps to create a public access defibrillation program for your school.
How to select a CPR/AED trainer
Check out our suggestions for how to select a CPR/AED trainer.