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June 14, 2019

Amy Gutmann, Ph.D.

University of Pennsylvania
3812 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6380

Pedro A. Rivera
Pennsylvania Secretary of Education
333 Market Street
Harrisburg, PA 17126

Dear Dr. Guttman & Mr. Rivera:

Yesterday I became aware of this January 30, 2019 Penn Medicine News item, Heimlich
Heroes to the Rescue! which reported:

(Sara Cohen MSN, RN) has been a long-time volunteer for the School District of
Philadelphia, but she wanted to find a way to help students learn and retain practical
life skills. When she found the interactive, hands-on Heimlich Heroes program, created
by Deaconess Associations, Inc. and the Heimlich Institute, she decided to team up
with school nurses and gym and health teachers to lead kidfriendly sessions.

...Using funding provided by a Penn Medicine CAREs grant, she was able to purchase
posters, bookmarks, and special training dolls that feature a diaphragm, trachea, and
lungs…So far, Cohen has taught more than 200 students in fifth through seventh grade
at three local public schools, and she anticipates easily passing her initial 500-student
goal by the spring. As word spreads and teachers continue to invite her back, she hopes
to expand the program to third and fourth graders soon, as well as other schools.

According to the website of Heimlich Heroes, 615 Elsinore Place, Cincinnati, OH 45202:

Heimlich Heroes was developed through a cooperative effort of Deaconess

Associations, Inc. and the Heimlich Institute...To date more than 100,000 people have
learned the Heimlich Maneuver through Heimlich Heroes training program.

Per this training video the organization published on YouTube and a training poster from the
organization’s website, Heimlich Heroes teaches the public to perform abdominal thrusts (the
Heimlich maneuver) on choking infants:
Since 2002, my wife and I have been researching the unusual career of my father, the late
Henry J. Heimlich MD, and his namesake anti-choking maneuver. Our work has resulted in
hundreds of mainstream print/broadcast media reports.

To our knowledge, since my father introduced “the Heimlich” in 1974, no legitimate medical
organization or medical expert has ever recommend using it on infants.

Here’s why.

Per Happy "Heimlich Maneuver Day" -- but beware Cincinnati's reckless "Heimlich Heroes"
first aid training program, an item I reported on my blog about a year ago, the American
Heart Association (AHA) and American Red Cross wrote me that they don’t recommend or
teach the treatment because it “may cause injuries.”

What kind of injuries? According to the AHA:

Abdominal thrusts, however, may cause complications. For this reason, the Heimlich
maneuver should never be performed unless it is necessary. Reported complications of
the Heimlich maneuver include damage to internal organs, such as rupture or
laceration of abdominal or thoracic viscera. In fact, victims who receive the Heimlich
maneuver should be medically evaluated to rule out any life-threatening complications.

If those concerns apply to children and adults, it’s easy to imagine the potential complications
for tiny babies.

That’s not the only problem.

Via Heimlich maneuver on unconscious persons causes controversy by Nick Kammerer,

Rambler Newspapers (Irving, TX), November 24, 2014:

Heimlich Heroes, a Cincinnati-based first aid program developed partly by Henry

Heimlich, is teaching students to perform the Heimlich maneuver on unconscious
choking victims. This means that school children are being taught a medical practice
that is not recommended by the American Heart Association or Red Cross, two highly
credible public health organizations.

As widely reported, for decades the Heimlich Institute has promoted a variety of other
experimental, thoroughly-discredited, potentially-harmful medical treatments which
tragically resulted in the significant loss of life, including children.

For more about that history, please see these reports based on our research and my outreach
to the reporters:

The Maneuver Part 2 by Chuck Goudie, ABC7 (Chicago), November 17, 2006

Heimlich family maneuvers - Famed doctor plans Portland visit; Son says he's dangerous,
works to discredit him by Peter Korn, The Portland (OR) Tribune, April 13, 2007

How Dr. Heimlich Maneuvered Hollywood Into Backing His Dangerous AIDS "Cure" by Seth
Abramovitch, The Hollywood Reporter, August 14, 2014
As far as I can tell, the Heimlich Heroes program is simply the Heimlich Institute’s latest
attempt to encourage the public to perform experimental, unapproved medical treatments.

In any event, why a medical professional of Ms. Cohen’s experience thought it was a good idea
teach young people to perform abdominal thrusts on choking infants and on unconscious
choking victims, and why Penn Medicine is funding that effort are questions that deserve to be
addressed, hence this outreach.

To that end and in the interests of preventing further harm resulting from the Heimlich
Institute’s decades of reckless endeavors, this is to respectfully request:

1) That your organizations investigate these concerns, provide me with the results, and that
any further training based on the Heimlich Heroes program cease until the investigations are

2) That I be provided with copies of all paperwork associated with the CAREs grant including
applications and approvals as well as copies of all training records to date including but not
limited to correspondence.

3) That parents of all students who have received training via the Heimlich Heroes program
be promptly notified in writing of the concerns I’ve brought to your attention, and that I be
provided a copy of the notification.

Thank you for your time/consideration and I look forward to your replies. If you have any
questions I might be able to help answer, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.


Peter M. Heimlich
Peachtree Corners, GA 30096
ph: (208)474-7283
e-mail: peter.heimlich@gmail.com
website: http://medfraud.info
blog: http://the-sidebar.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/medfraud_pmh
bio: http://tinyurl.com/ych7o7dr