GREENVILLE, SC (WSPA-TV) – The Greenville Health System and Bon Secours St Francis are teaming up to help you save a life, one app alert at a time. They’re joining Greenville County to launch PulsePoint, an app that tells you when someone needs CPR in your area and where you can find the nearest AED.
Those first minutes are crucial when someone is in cardiac arrest. Doctors say the sooner chest compressions start, the better the chances are of survival.
“I actually walked out of the truck, sat on some fork lifts and dropped dead,” explained John Ingle at Tuesday’s launch announcement in Greenville. “Because I was blessed to be in a place that had training and had an AED, they were taking care of me within seconds.”
Ingles’ story is often shared as a benchmark for why quick CPR response is needed, many times before first responders can arrive.
“Where I had my heart attack, I was blessed. Someone who is just walking down the street, now they have the opportunity to be blessed,” said Ingle.
PulsePoint allows trained bystanders to provide that help before ems even arrives.
“In a situation where there’s sudden cardiac arrest and CPR is needed, individuals with the app downloaded will be alerted simultaneously to ems and fire dispatch,” said Craig McCoy, President and CEO of Bon Secours St. Francis Health System.
Dispatch can walk the Good Samaritan through the CPR process as needed until EMS arrives. As a former paramedic himself, McCoy sees how this app is a game changer.
“Within 8 minutes, without oxygen rich blood, a person can suffer brain damage or death. Beyond 10 minutes, resuscitation becomes nearly impossible,” he explained.
Dr. Marty Lutz, a physician with Greenville County Emergency Medical Services agrees.
“Bystander CPR increases survivability 2 to 3 times,” said Lutz.
Lutz was part of the pulse point test group. He’s already seen the app work in real time.
“I’ve actually had one real CPR request. It was a building next to mine downtown,” said Lutz.
While he admits these situations can be scary for bystanders, he encourages people to take action if they can.
“Doing something is better than doing nothing,” said Lutz.
The app, itself, is free to use.
While it does talk an untrained person through CPR, EMS in Greenville says they would like to see users get trained, first. They provide those classes to the public and say it takes only 5 minutes to get a person trained to save lives.
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