You are biking home from a night shift and see a jogger collapse in front of you.

Or you are eating out at a café and a patron outside a food truck down the street has a heart attack. You are a nurse, you know how to do CPR and use a defibrillator.

In the first scenario, you don’t know a defibrillator is available 20 metres away at a petrol station. In the second case, you are unaware that somebody close by is in desperate need of help.

The two apps reviewed this edition could help you save lives.

GoodSAM (Good Smartphone Activated Medics) responder

CPR trained volunteers can download and sign up to be ‘Good Samaritan responders’ and receive ambulance alerts of suspected cardiac arrests nearby so they can assist before emergency services arrive. The app alerts registered responders within a kilometre of the person in need and also tells them if there is an AED (automatic external defibrillator) nearby.

 Pros  

  • Developed in the  UK but now integrated with St John New Zealand and Wellington Free Ambulance to alert nearby registered responders when a 111 call of a suspected heart attack is received.
  • Supported by the New Zealand National Cardiac Network and the New Zealand Resuscitation Council.  

Cons  

  • In order to receive alerts, you need to have the app open.
  • If you swipe up or log out, or reset your phone, the responder app switches off.  

AED locations

This app helps you to locate the nearest AED (automatic external defibrillator) quickly, wherever you are in New Zealand. The app, and associated website, allows you to browse a map or search locations by name or address. It then gives you the details of the closest AED, contact information and when the location is usually open.

Pros  

  • Lists the location of 9,500 AEDs across the country.
  • Additions and changes uploaded to app every 48 hours.
  • Now indicates if an AED is available 24/7.
  • An NZ-developed app that also has a website: www.aedlocations.co.nz.
  • Supported by organisations including the Heart Foundation, the Cardiac Society, St John New Zealand and NZMA.

Cons  

  • Does not guarantee that the AED is in full working order, that you have a right to use it, or that the location is geographically correct.

 

The NZ App Project: Health Navigator, a non-profit trust, is using technical and clinical reviewers to help develop a New Zealand-based library of useful and relevant health apps. Health professionals who would like to be part of the project can email Sandra@healthnavigator.org.nz.

 

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