Recently an app notified a nearby mechanic that an infant stopped breathing. He responded to the scene only a block away saving the baby's life before help arrived. The app, called PulsePoint, is being used in several cities and states to link people with CPR capabilities to those in dire need.
"Baby Nolan was with his mom shopping when he stopped breathing," Richard Price, president of the PulsePoint Foundation told Press:Here. "Spokane firefighters were dispatched to come on the scene and it also notified a nearby auto mechanic."
PulsePoint is integrated in 911 centers, so when dispatch sends resources on their way it also alerts any nearby responders. PulsePoint is used in the Bay Area, as well as Tucson, Dallas, Los Angeles, Spokane and many other cities.
The app was built with volunteer help from Pleasanton-based WorkDay, which donated about a dozen employees who gave 20 percent of their day to the project. The app generally notifies those users who are CPR-certified within a quarter-mile or less of the call. "Many of the responders are off-duty firefighters, nurses," Price said.
In response to a question about liability, Price said that much of today's CPR is hands-only and Good Samaritan laws, which protect people giving first aid in imminent peril, are usually followed in most states. "Our challenge is that those who are CPR-trained to have the courage to get engaged in this way," he said.