The Good Samaritan Laws

By Tri-State Training February 15, 2023
Have you seen an emergency situation, but don't know how to help? Are you unsure of what protection you have as a bystander? 

Picture it: With multiple cases of Cardiac Arrest in the news, you decide to make the smart choice and take a CPR class with Tri-State Training. After the training, you earn a certification of completion. A week later, you’re at the store and someone goes into Sudden Cardiac Arrest. Your mind races with hundreds of thoughts, but one sticks out, “will I get in trouble for helping?” 

The fact that you are trying to help speaks volumes. And guess what, as a bystander you are protected! The Good Samaritan Law defends a bystander with good intentions, helping someone who is incapacitated, before medical professionals arrive. It also protects against a bystander doing nothing - you are not obligated to help a person in an emergency crisis. The Good Samaritan Law was enacted to reduce bystander hesitation. One of the reasons for bystander hesitation is the Bystander Effect. The bystander effect happens when a group of people see an emergency situation, but think that someone else will jump in and help. Others feel that they would do more harm if they tried to intervene in the situation or just don't want to get involved.

If you feel uncomfortable performing CPR on someone in need, there are other ways to take action. Remaining calm, calling 911, and keeping the scene safe for medical personnel are all ways to help in emergency situations.

As a reminder, in any emergency situation, please use caution and your best judgment.

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