Livingston County first in Michigan to adopt smartphone-based system to aid with cardiac arrest

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A unique mobile app system now in use in Livingston County means that anyone who knows CPR can potentially save a life. Livingston County is the first in Michigan to become a PulsePoint Community, which uses smartphone apps to get help where it is needed.

PulsePoint, currently in use in more than 2,500 communities across the U.S., uses a two-fold approach: Residents trained in CPR who’ve indicated that they’re willing to assist in an emergency will be notified via the PulsePoint Respond app that someone nearby is in sudden cardiac arrest and may need their help. The PulsePoint AED app reduces collapse-to-defibrillation time by increasing awareness of public access defibrillator locations.

Anyone with a smartphone can download the free PulsePoint Respond app through Google Play and iTunes. Once the app is installed, the user just needs to select the Livingston county Fire and EMS as the agency serving the area to receive alerts.

This potentially life-saving system in is available because all eight Livingston County fire departments and Livingston County EMS — with financial support from the American Heart Association — championed the adoption of the system, making the county the first in Michigan to become a Pulse Point Community.

More than 350,000 Americans have an out-of-hospital sudden cardiac arrest each year in which the heart suddenly stops beating. Ninety percent of these events are fatal. The American Heart Association estimates that effective hands-only CPR provided immediately after a cardiac emergency can double or triple a person’s chance of survival, but only 46 percent of victims received bystander CPR in 2016. Even fewer received a potentially life-saving therapeutic shock from a public access defibrillator.

In addition to receiving notifications about cardiac arrests near you, PulsePoint will also notify you in real time of other emergencies in your area, such as car accidents, structure fires, and other non-medical emergencies. These notifications won’t ask you to respond; instead, the notifications will make you aware of areas to avoid.

If you have any questions about PulsePoint, or if you’d like more information, you can call Lt. Corey Laber or Chief Michael O’Brian of the Brighton Area Fire Authority at (810) 229-6640.

Development and support for the application is provided by the PulsePoint Foundation, a nonprofit organization established to guide, enhance, and expand the reach of the app.


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The Livingston Post is the only locally owned, all-digital information and opinion site in Livingston County, Mich. It was launched by award-winning journalists who were laid off from the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus by Gannett Co. Inc. in 2009.