June 10, 2015 | by

Clinical Trial: Mobile-Phone Dispatch of Laypersons for CPR in Out-of-Hospital Cardiac Arrest

Bystander-initiated cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) before the arrival of emergency-medical-services (EMS) personnel is associated with a rate of survival among patients with out-of-hospital cardiac arrest that is up to three times as high as the rate among patients who do not receive such assistance. Low rates of bystander-initiated CPR are a major obstacle to improved survival rates.

The usual approach to increase rates of bystander-initiated CPR has been to train as much of the public as possible. However, this approach is associated with substantial costs and uncertain effects on rates of bystander-initiated CPR. With the use of a mobile-phone positioning system, persons who have mobile phones can be located and sent to assist patients with suspected out-of-hospital cardiac arrest; this approach has been reported in prior pilot and simulation studies.

We hypothesized that the use of a mobile-phone positioning system to dispatch lay responders who are trained in CPR to assist patients with suspected out-of-hospital cardiac arrest would increase the proportion of cases in which CPR was performed by trained bystanders.

Conclusion
The use of a mobile-phone positioning system for location and dispatch of lay volunteers who were trained in CPR to patients nearby who had out-of-hospital cardiac arrest significantly increased the rate of bystander-initiated CPR.

Read more about the study and results in The New England Journal of Medicine.