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New App Could Save Lives

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Tech Crunch reports on a fantastically innovative concept for reaching heart attack victims sooner and saving lives:

In the San Francisco suburb of San Ramon, California, a press conference is being held to launch a new version of the somewhat generic sounding iPhone application Fire Department.In attendance are Fire Chief Richard Price, International Association of Fire Chiefs (IAFC) President Jack Parow, Workday CEO Dave Duffield (who also cofounded PeopleSoft), and Tim O’Reilly of O’Reilly Media. It’s an interesting mix, and it may be the start of a very important campaign that could save many lives.

Here’s the gist of the app: you launch it, and it prompts you to ask if you’ve been trained in CPR and would be willing to help a stranger in the event of an emergency. If you accept this, then the application will take advantage of the iPhone’s location monitoring to get a general sense of where you are (a new feature enabled with the most recent update allows this with a minimal amount of battery drain). Then, the next time a 911 dispatch center receives a call for an emergency that’s occurring near you, you’ll receive a push notification telling you that help is needed. The app will also tell if you if an automated external defibrillator (those electric paddles that can kickstart a heart) is nearby.

Check out the ad for the app below:

Fire Department App - PSA from Fire Department on Vimeo.