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June 14, 2015 | by

Crowdsourcing CPR gets more help to cardiac arrest victims

If you go into cardiac arrest, getting help within the first few minutes can mean the difference between life and death. A new study shows that help can get to victims more quickly with a mobile-phone app that directs people who know CPR to medical emergencies near them.

The researchers call their app a “mobile-phone positioning system,” an homage to the network of satellites that make up the global positioning system, or GPS. The app uses the GPS function in mobile phones to find and contact bystanders trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation who happen to be in the vicinity of a reported cardiac emergency. CPR-trained volunteers download the app if they are willing to get the alerts.

Dr. Leif Svensson, a cardiologist at the Center for Resuscitation Science at Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, conceived of the research project 10 years ago during his morning commute. A 50-year-old woman’s heart stopped right outside the bus he was on.

“Nobody on the bus, including myself, saw this,” he said.

But when he arrived at the hospital for work, he saw the woman again, dead upon arrival in the emergency room.

“I was sitting approximately 10 to 15 feet from the place where she had her cardiac arrest,” Svensson recalled. If he had known of her condition earlier, he would have been able to help by performing CPR.

So Svensson recruited some colleagues and devised a system to “find your closest lifesaver,” as he put it. Whenever someone reported a case of cardiac arrest to emergency responders, all CPR-trained volunteers who were within about a third of a mile of the patient would receive a text message and a phone call to alert them to the emergency and the patient’s location.

To test how well it worked, Svensson and his team enlisted nearly 10,000 CPR-trained volunteers to participate in the study. The team activated the network and put out a call to volunteers after 306 cardiac arrests over a 20-month period. In those cases, a volunteer was able to initiate CPR 62% of the time.

View the full story by Sasha Harris-Lovett at the Los Angeles Times.

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LAFD and LAUSD

March 4, 2015 | by

Los Angeles Fire Department Partners with PulsePoint Foundation

Brings Lifesaving Technology to Angelenos via 9-1-1 Integrated Smartphone App

LOS ANGELES – The Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) has joined with the PulsePoint Foundation and The Wireless Foundation to bring life-saving technology to Angelenos via PulsePoint, a mobile app designed to increase citizen awareness of cardiac events beyond a traditional “witnessed” area and engage them in potentially life-saving CPR.

The partnership was formally launched Wednesday, March 4th at an event at Woodrow Wilson High School in El Sereno where 120 students became CPR trained. Fire Chief Ralph M. Terrazas was joined by Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, LAUSD ESC-East Superintendent Roberto Martinez, PulsePoint Foundation President Richard Price and The Wireless Foundation Executive Director Athena Polydorou to discuss the LAFD’s rollout of the free PulsePoint app.

“This app connects trained lifesavers who may already be on scene with people who need immediate help, when seconds count the most,” Mayor Garcetti said. “My back to basics agenda is focused on implementing technologies that can make a difference in ways that are most important to our residents, and there is no greater priority than emergency response. I want to see this app activate an army of civilian first responders across Los Angeles,” said Mayor Eric Garcetti.

“Our new partnership with PulsePoint allows the LAFD to help save lives with our smartphones, which is technology that most of us already have in hand,” said Fire Chief Ralph M. Terrazas. “I am excited that Angelenos have another crucial tool at their fingertips that can help them further engage with their communities and fire department.”

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Targeted toward off-duty professionals and citizens trained in CPR, the PulsePoint app alerts users when a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) occurs in a nearby public place, directs them to the patient location and provides CPR guidance while LAFD paramedic units are en route to the call. The app also notifies users of the closest available Automatic External Defibrillator (AED). Early application of bystander CPR and rapid defibrillation from an AED have proven to be crucial in improving a person’s chance of surviving SCA. PulsePoint is not limited to emergency responders or those with official CPR certification. It can be used by anyone who has been trained in CPR.

The PulsePoint app also provides users with a display of the LAFD’s active and recent incidents citywide. On average, the LAFD responds to nearly 1,200 daily calls for service; more than 85 percent are for emergency medical services.

“Our youth represent the next generation of CPR-trained citizens. These students living in a connected world have come to expect technology to improve their lives and the lives of those around them,” said Richard Price, founder and president of the PulsePoint Foundation. “The premise of a PulsePoint Connected community truly resonates with them and they have proven to be active participants in this strengthening of the Chain of Survival.”

“Wireless technology plays a critical role in our everyday lives, and the PulsePoint app is a perfect example of how location-based services, apps, smartphones and crowdsourcing help save lives,” said Athena Polydorou, Executive Director of The Wireless Foundation. “The Wireless Foundation is proud to sponsor the roll out of PulsePoint and bring this life saving service to Los Angeles City at no cost to the Fire Department.”

“PulsePoint is a great way to engage bystanders in emergency response and this new Los Angeles partnership will empower a future generation of CPR responders,” said Brian Webster, president and CEO of Physio-Control, PulsePoint’s marketing and implementation partner. “With PulsePoint offering lifesaving technology, the Los Angeles Fire Department contributing high quality CPR expertise, and the Los Angeles Unified School District building a program that engages students, this is truly a model program for engaging a community to respond to sudden cardiac arrest.”

The free PulsePoint app is available for iPhone and Android and can be downloaded from the iTunes Store and Google Play.

About the PulsePoint Foundation

PulsePoint is a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Through the use of location-aware mobile devices PulsePoint is building applications that work with local public safety agencies to improve communications with citizens, empowering them to help reduce the millions of annual deaths from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). Deployment of the PulsePoint app can significantly strengthen the “chain of survival” by improving bystander response to cardiac arrest victims and increasing the chance that lifesaving steps will be taken prior to the arrival of emergency medical services (EMS). PulsePoint is supported by the Wireless Foundation, built and maintained by volunteer engineers at Workday and distributed by our marketing and implementation partner Physio-Control, Inc. Learn more at www.pulsepoint.org or join the conversation at Facebook and Twitter.

About the Wireless Foundation

The Wireless Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit dedicated to developing and supporting initiatives that use wireless technology to help American communities. The Foundation’s innovative programs benefit consumers in areas such as education, healthcare, safety and the environment. The Foundation was formed by CTIA-The Wireless Association® member companies in 1991. Learn more at www.wirelessfoundation.org.

About Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Although a heart attack can lead to sudden cardiac arrest (SCA), the two are not the same. SCA is when the heart malfunctions and suddenly stops beating unexpectedly, whereas a heart attack is when blood flow to the heart is blocked, but the heart continues to beat. Each year, more than 420,000 out-of-hospital cardiac arrests occur, making it the leading cause of death in the United States. Survival rates nationally for SCA are less than eight percent, but delivery of CPR can sustain life until paramedics arrive by maintaining vital blood flow to the heart and brain. However, only about a third of SCA victims receive bystander CPR. Without CPR, brain damage or death can occur in minutes. The average EMS response time is nine minutes, even in urban settings; after 10 minutes there is little chance of successful resuscitation. The American Heart Association estimates that effective bystander CPR, provided immediately after SCA, can double or triple a person’s chance of survival.

# # #

LAFD: Peter Sanders, (213) 359-7141
PulsePoint: Shannon Smith, (773) 339-7513
The Wireless Foundation: Amy Storey, 202-736-3207

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LAFD and LAUSD

March 4, 2015 | by

Media Advisory: LAFD to Launch PulsePoint Smartphone App & Announce CPR Training Initiative with LAUSD

Los Angeles – Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas and Mayor Eric Garcetti will join representatives from the PulsePoint Foundation, The Wireless Foundation, and the Los Angeles Unified School District to announce the LAFD’s participation in PulsePoint, a free mobile app designed to increase citizen awareness of cardiac arrest and enable them to provide potentially life-saving CPR. The LAFD will also announce a new Hands-Only CPR initiative with LAUSD. Please join us on Wednesday, March 4th, at 9:15 a.m. in the gym at Woodrow Wilson High School, 4500 Multnomah St., Los Angeles 90032.

Who: Mayor Eric Garcetti
LAUSD ESC-East Superintendent Roberto Martinez
LAFD Fire Chief Ralph Terrazas
PulsePoint Foundation President Richard Price
The Wireless Foundation Executive Director Athena Polydorou
Wilson High School Students
When: Wednesday, March 4th
9:15 a.m.
Where: Woodrow Wilson High School
Large Gymnasium
4500 Multnomah St.
Los Angeles 90032

Press Contact:
LAFD: Peter Sanders, (213) 359-7141
PulsePoint: Shannon Smith, (773) 339-7513
LAUSD: Monica Carazo, (213) 241-6767

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January 30, 2013 | by

‘PulsePoint’ app, which helps people get lifesaving CPR, coming to Los Angeles

LAFD LogoSmartphones, already used to alert us of such pressing matters as sports scores and new Facebook posts, could soon help save lives in L.A.

The Los Angeles Fire Department will soon begin using an application called PulsePoint, which sends messages to people’s cellphones when someone is having a cardiac emergency nearby.

The hope is that people trained in CPR will install the app, see the alerts and be able to start life-saving treatment before paramedics arrive.

Sometimes, after they see an ambulance pull up, bystanders wish they had known someone needed help, said Capt. Tom Gikas, who works in the Fire Department’s Planning Section.

“How many people on a given evening in a local restaurant know CPR?” Gikas wondered.

That’s exactly the question that led to PulsePoint.

Read the full article by Eric Hartley, at the Daily News.

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December 10, 2012 | by

App Makes Bystanders Key in Cardiac Arrest Survival

Firehouse Magazine LogoCitizens in a growing number of cities around the U.S. are now getting alerted when there’s an opportunity to perform bystander CPR, thanks to the PulsePoint phone app.

The free app, which notifies trained citizens of nearby cardiac emergencies and the location of the nearest AED, was originally developed and tested by the San Ramon Valley (Calif.) Fire Protection District. It works by connecting a participating agency’s dispatch data into the PulsePoint service so that citizen alerts go out simultaneously with the dispatch of local fire and EMS resources. (Citizen alerts only go out for cardiac emergencies in public places, not to private addresses.) The app shows the victim and the nearby AEDs on a map, in context to the recipient of the alert.

The app has had several updates and releases since it first launched.“The app is in a continuous update cycle,” said Price, thanks to time donated by professional developers at Workday, Inc. “We’re working on a major new version right now.”

In February, after the program had been running locally in San Ramon for over a year, the PulsePoint Foundation opened it up to other agencies. It has quickly spread in California and nationally.

“By the end of the month we expect it to be in more than 100 cities,” said San Ramon Valley Fire Chief Richard Price, who is also the president of the PulsePoint foundation.

Read the full article by Heather Caspi at Firehouse.com.

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