That's the purpose of PulsePoint, which is scheduled to go live today.
While anybody can download the app, it's designed to alert people trained in CPR to nearby cardiac emergencies. If somebody can get to the scene before
The app is free to download and available for Android and iPhone smartphones. And when there's an instance of sudden cardiac arrest in a public venue, it will use GPS technology to send an alert to users within a quarter mile of where the call originates, Huebner said.
The message is sent automatically at the same time call information is sent to
When an PulsePoint alert is sent, it shows a map detailing the location of the person receiving the notification, the location of the call and the location of the nearest automated external defibrillator, Huebner said. The alert even has basic CPR instructions in case they are needed, he said.
In addition to sending information about cardiac arrest, users can listen to most radio transmissions for calls to which the fire department responds, Huebner said. People can select to listen to what type of department calls they want, he said.
While that feature offers a level of transparency and will help people better understand the types of calls to which the fire department responds, that's not the main reason it was developed.
Quicker response time can be vital in instances of sudden cardiac arrest, said
"When it does, it can make a difference in the person's life," she said.
The app is a partnership between
Sudden cardiac arrest leads to roughly 325,000 deaths annually in
Kirkpatrick noted there's a difference between cardiac arrest and a heart attack. With cardiac arrest, a person's heart stops. When a person has a heart attack, the heart is still pumping, though not normally or at full strength. The result is hindered circulation.
"I'm really impressed with their motivation to increase the possibility of a fast reaction to a possible cardiac arrest," Kirkpatrick said of the fire department and dispatch center.
"We view this as a complete integration of community heath care within the
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To see a video about how the PulsePoint smart phone app works, see the
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