If you’re going to have a heart attack, you might want to plant to have it in Seattle. Earlier this year we wrote about PulsePoint, a service that connects with local 911 emergency call networks to alert CPR-trained citizens nearby when someone has a sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). The service also includes information about the closest publicly accessible Automated External Defibrillator (AED). Minutes saved in early care for SCA events can mean the difference between life and death. Now there’s a documented case in which Pulsepoint alerted 41 people in a 330-yard radius of a person with SCA after a 911 call.
Earlier this month a 60-year old man in Seattle collapsed after getting off his bike. Fortunately, he was in front of the University of Washington Medical Center. A medical student on the way to a lecture rushed over to help and told a bystander to call 911. The 911 call triggered a PulsePoint alert that went out to the 41 people, one of whom was a cardiac nurse inside the hospital. She had installed the app on her phone recently and this was the first alert she’d received. She ran down two flights of stairs and went outside, following the directions on the smartphone app, and assisted with helping the patient, including supervising the medical student to be sure he was helping properly. The victim credits the response from the PulsePoint system for saving his life.
This success story was broadcast by a Seattle television station that is part of the ABC News network. Prior to the incident, about 4,000 Seattle residents had installed the app on their phones, and the story carried information about how others could download the program. Cities interested in learning more about the participation with the PulsePoint system for 911 networks can find out how to obtain information or start the process at on the company website. News about health tech success stories can help gain attention to life-changing and, in some cases, life-saving technologies.