Life-saving CPR performed after mobile app funded by El Camino Hospital notifies nearby citizen responder
Sunnyvale, CA, April 13, 2015 - On Wednesday, March 25, 2015, lifelong Sunnyvale resident Walter Huber was sitting down to dinner when he received an alert through PulsePoint, a 9-1-1 connected mobile app designed to alert CPR-trained citizens of sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) emergencies in their vicinity. This app alert helped save a man’s life.
The PulsePoint app displayed a map showing Huber, 21, the location of the emergency, which was based on 9-1-1 call information. Using this map, Huber made his way to the reported SCA patient’s location - a soccer field just steps from his home - where he found a man unconscious and surrounded by his teammates. Just minutes earlier the man had collapsed, unresponsive and without a pulse, prompting his teammates to call 9-1-1. Huber, who is CPR trained, immediately assessed the patient and began hands-only CPR. He provided chest compressions until a Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety Officer arrived in a patrol car equipped with an Automated External Defibrillator (AED). The AED delivered a life-saving shock, effectively bringing Farid Rashti, 63, back to life.
"When someone suffers a sudden cardiac arrest, the heart stops beating without any warning so time is critical," said Dr. Chad Rammohan, M.D. medical director of Cardiac Catheterization Lab and Chest Pain Center at El Camino Hospital and a Palo Alto Medical Foundation physician. "It's the 'electrical shock' from the AED that helps to restore the person's heartbeat and it's the mechanical pumping from CPR that helps the SCA victim to recover some blood flow to vital organs such as the brain, heart and the rest of the body."
A family history of heart disease coupled with a 2004 heart attack resulting in quadruple bypass surgery, has led Rashti, a Campbell, Calif. resident, to live a healthy lifestyle. However, while playing soccer on March 25, he was hit by the ball on the left side of his chest. He felt a sharp pain, unlike during his earlier heart attack. He switched to goalie where he could catch his breath when, he recalls “suddenly everything started to go black and that is the last thing I remember.” Rashti had suffered a SCA. The only way for a person to survive a SCA is to immediately receive 1) CPR, 2) an electrical shock from an AED, and 3) transport to the closest hospital emergency room.
"Thankfully the PulsePoint app alerted me to someone in need, only steps away, so I could put my training to good use and, as it turns out, help save a life," said Huber, a Mission College student. "The fact that you could potentially save a life with this app confirms how important it is for everyone to learn CPR and download PulsePoint."
"I'm so grateful that I was in public, surrounded by people,”" said Rashti from his home where he's been recovering. "Without my friends calling 9-1-1, the PulsePoint responder starting CPR and the patrol officer shocking me back to life with an AED, I would not be alive today." Santa Clara County, in which the City of Sunnyvale is located, was one of the first counties in the nation to fully integrate this technology with its 9-1-1 system. The collaboration and allocated resources from the Santa Clara County fire departments, the PulsePoint Foundation, El Camino Hospital and tech company Workday, brought this lifesaving technology to Santa Clara County citizens. The coordinated effort by Santa Clara County, Rashti’s teammates, the PulsePoint-notified citizen responder and the care provided by the emergency room at Kaiser Permanente Santa Clara Medical Center helped save Rashti's life.
"Every element in this chain of survival was enhanced by quick action and cutting edge technology. All Sunnyvale public safety officers are trained as police officers, firefighters and EMTs so they arrive on scene and immediately bring life-saving support with an AED and first aid equipment," said Steve Drewniany, Deputy Chief of the Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety. "It was the quick action by Farid's friends and Walter that set the entire response in motion. You couldn't ask for a better example of how technology like PulsePoint and AEDs can save lives, which is why we're making full use of them here in Sunnyvale."
The PulsePoint mobile app is designed to reduce collapse-to-CPR and collapse-to-defibrillation times by increasing citizen awareness of cardiac events beyond a traditional "witnessed" area. The app also directs users to the precise location of nearby public AEDs. The free app is available for download on iTunes and GooglePlay.
About the PulsePoint Foundation
PulsePoint is a 501(c)(3) non-profit foundation based in the San Francisco Bay Area. Through the use of location-aware mobile devices, PulsePoint is building applications that work with local public safety agencies to improve communications with citizens, empowering them to help reduce the millions of annual deaths from sudden cardiac arrest (SCA). Deployment of the PulsePoint app can significantly strengthen the “chain of survival” by improving bystander response to cardiac arrest victims and increasing the chance that lifesaving steps will be taken prior to the arrival of emergency medical services (EMS). PulsePoint is supported by the Wireless Foundation, built and maintained by volunteer engineers at Workday and distributed by our marketing and implementation partner Physio-Control, Inc. Learn more at www.pulsepoint.org or join the conversation at Facebook and Twitter.
About Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety
Located in the San Francisco Bay Area, the City of Sunnyvale Department of Public Safety is one of the largest fully-integrated Police, Fire, and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) public entities in the United States serving a City of over 147,000 residents. All of the Department's Officers are fully qualified cross-trained Police Officers, Firefighters and EMT-Basic professionals. Public Safety Officers fulfill these roles in their daily duties, ensuring the highest levels of efficiency and competency for the Sunnyvale community.
About Cardiac Arrest
Out-of-hospital cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death in the United States, accounting for an estimated 424,000 deaths each year, more than 1,000 deaths per day. The American Heart Association estimates that effective bystander CPR, provided immediately after cardiac arrest, can double or triple a person’s chance of survival. However, less than half of cardiac arrest victims receive bystander CPR and even fewer receive a potentially lifesaving therapeutic shock from a public access AED. Improving bystander CPR rates and access to AEDs is critical to chain of survival, which requires: (1) early recognition of the emergency and phoning 9-1-1 for EMS, (2) early bystander CPR, (3) early delivery of a shock via a defibrillator if indicated and (4) early advanced life support and post-resuscitation care delivered by healthcare providers.
Different than a heart attack, sudden cardiac arrest is caused when the heart’s electrical system malfunctions and the heart stops working properly. For every minute that passes without a SCA victim receiving resuscitation, the chances of that person surviving decrease 10 percent. After 10 minutes the chances of survival are minimal.