Responder app a life saver

Sophia ConstantineNorth West Telegraph
Paramedic Caris Elson and volunteer officer Janelle Cockayne at the St John of Country Ambulance depot in South Hedland.
Camera IconParamedic Caris Elson and volunteer officer Janelle Cockayne at the St John of Country Ambulance depot in South Hedland. Credit: Picture: Sophia Constantine

Pilbara residents are being urged to take advantage of a new application aimed at increasing people’s chance of survival in emergency situations through early intervention during an incident.

The St John Ambulance WA First Responder app sends notifications to qualified, registered users who are within 500 metres of a public emergency incident.

The app enables people to dial triple zero and automatically sends GPS co-ordinates to the St John State Operations Centre, which helps paramedics locate the patient.

The responder, either a paramedic, doctor, nurse or member of the public — is able to locate the patient and provide immediate care and preliminary treatment while an ambulance is en route.

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Provided there is mobile phone reception in the area, paramedics can receive exact location, whether or not there is signage or a visible landmark in the area.

Local paramedic Caris Elson said the idea of the app was to provide early intervention.

“There’s a lot of sport in this town, so if you’re out at a sporting event and something happens, you can administer first aid,” she said.

“It will notify you of the nearest defibrillation.

“If you go to a job where CPR is needing to be performed, it will also alert you that there is a defibrillation in range. For every minute that someone’s down, you lose 10 per cent chance of survival.”

St John Ambulance clinical services director Paul Bailey said the app was particularly effective in providing immediate treatment to people suffering a heart attack or cardiac arrest.

“The First Responder app is a truly lifesaving innovation that dramatically increases a patient’s chance of survival in an emergency,” he said.

“Time is critical in all emergencies, but even more so for someone with a cardiac condition.”

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