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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Bringing victims and resources together

Here's a report of another iPhone app for CPR / AED resource matching. See also Dr. Dana Elliott's "AED" Nearby smart phone app. Both these initiatives try to bring cardiac arrest victims and AED's together. The app described below also alerts CPR-trained personnel who have signed up to be notified.


Back in January I wrote about an ambitious new mobile application that has a very good chance of saving lives (perhaps even many lives). And it’s just gotten support from the City of San Francisco, which is the first major city to pledge support for this very important service.

The application itself is called Fire Department. Download it, and you’ll be asked if you’re trained in CPR. Click ‘Yes’, and the application will then passively monitor your location (without draining your phone’s battery). Here’s where the life-saving comes in: if someone calls 911 to report a possible heart attack victim, 911 dispatchers can send an alert to anyone in the vicinity with CPR training who has this app on their phone. They’ll immediately receive a push notification with the location of the victim, as well as the locations of any nearby automatic external defibrillators (AEDs). The whole process only takes a matter of seconds. Minutes are absolutely critical in these situations, and the immediate initiation of CPR before an ambulance arrives can be life saving.

But there’s still a lot of work to be done. At this point the service is only available in the San Ramon Valley Fire Protection District where the initiative got its start (Lucas Hirst, who has helped spearhead the effort, is a friend of mine from high school). San Francisco is now on board, and is asking volunteers to help build a map of AEDs (which frequently go unused in emergencies because people simply don’t know they’re there). San Francisco hopes to have the technology working by the end of the year. The city’s website for the initiative is right here.

The news was announced at an event today by SF Fire Chief Joanne Hayes-White and City Attorney Dennis Herrera, along with Fire Fighters Union Local 798. Now if only they’d fix the startup tax situation.

Man meets his Chaminade life savers

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) – At Chaminade Wednesday, six students were recognized with awards of heroism.

Executive assistant to Hawaii county Mayor Bill Kenoi, Bobby Command was visiting the Chaminade campus with his family on February 5th to watch a high school basketball game. He went to his car when he started to feel a little uneasy. "Suddenly got really dizzy. I had some problems with my heart before so I kind of knew what was happening. I was beginning to faint," said Command.

Command collapsed and went into full cardiac arrest. Treston Silva so happened to be nearby when he saw Command on the ground. Glenn Yri remembers when he came rushing to help. As soon as Yri saw Command lying on the ground, he called 911. "I felt for a pulse and couldn't feel anything. And I asked Emmanuel if he could feel anything," said Yri. He took the initiative and started doing CPR.

"Next thing I know, I'm in the emergency room at Straub. And the doctor is asking me all these questions trying to figure out if I'm ok. And he says, you know, you're really lucky guy and I said, why? And he says because there was someone there so save your life that knew CPR," said Command.

He spent the next 11 days in the hospital and had the opportunity to meet his Silversword lifesavers. Command says that unexpected situations like this shows how important it is to learn CPR.

"I don't know how I can repay them for what they did. If they weren't there, I would be dead today," said Command. "My birthday is April 11, 1958…but my birthday now is February 6, 2011, it was my second birthday there."

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