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PulsePoint – Empowering Ordinary Citizens to Help Save Lives

Provided by Prince William Fire & Rescue

You’ve learned CPR, and you are ready to help others. How do you put your training to good use? Like the majority of things these days, there’s an app for that too. Prince William County’s Department of Fire and Rescue is looking for individuals who know CPR to download PulsePoint, an app that notifies those nearby of a medical emergency where CPR needs to be administered. “The goal of this program is to notify participants of the possible need for CPR to try to save as many lives as possible,” said Fire and
Rescue Chief Kevin McGee.

The users of the application who have indicated they are trained in CPR and willing to assist in case of an emergency will be notified if someone nearby is having a cardiac emergency in a public place. The notification to the application is sent at the same time as the County’s 9-1-1 system dispatches fire and rescue crews to the medical emergency.

In addition to the early intervention of CPR, the use of an Automated External Defibrillator, or AED, can greatly increase the victim’s chance of surviving a cardiac arrest. Each year, more than 350,000 emergency cardiac arrests occur in the United States. PulsePoint can help with that as well. The app will indicate the location of the nearest AED at the same time it shows the location of the cardiac arrest victim. The citizen responder will be notified through PulsePoint on their smart phone. It will show
where they are in relation to the location of the incident (cardiac arrest victim), if they’re within a quarter-mile of the incident, and the closest AED. It’s important to know where the AED is and to use it.

Chief McGee said the main idea behind PulsePoint is to get help to cardiac arrest victims as soon as possible. “Every minute people go without aid, after a cardiac arrest, reduces their chance of survival by 10 percent. PulsePoint is an important link in the chain of survival.”

PulsePoint and PulsePoint AED can be downloaded from the App Store or Google Play.

For more information about the Department of Fire and Rescue, PulsePoint or where you can learn CPR, visit pwcgov.org/pulsepoint.

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