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CPR Phone App Launches

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A new smartphone app launched in San Diego County aims to save lives by getting sudden cardiac arrest victims the help they need faster.

For every minute a victim of sudden cardiac arrest waits for CPR, their chance of survival drops by up to 10 percent.

Ive been working out hard since I was five and never ever had an issue until this one day, said sudden cardiac arrest victim Tom Johnson.

Johnson, a marathon runner and exercise enthusiast, was at the gym with his physician wife last November when he collapsed.

I did not have a heartbeat for between 8-10 minutes. So the reason I had any blood flow to vital organs was because two doctors were pushing on my chest doing textbook CPR, he said.

After about 10 minutes, first-responders arrived.

(They) shocked me back to life and took me to Scripps Memorial Hospital, he said.

Johnson is thrilled over the new free app called PulsePoint.

I think its going to be a game changer, he said.

The app is activated when local fire or EMS are dispatched to help a victim.  CPR trained citizens who signed up for the app and are nearby will be notified of the location of the victim.

On thousands of San Diego phones, we can essentially crowd source the delivery of early CPR before the first responders get there, said District 4 County Supervisor Ron Roberts.

San Diego joins more than 500 areas around the nation that have started using the app.

It also shows the user where the nearest publicly available automated external defibrillator or AED is located through real time mapping, said San Diego Mayor Kevin Faulconer.  This truly is cutting edge technology that will help save lives.

County Supervisor Roberts said it cost about $100,000 from the citys public safety fund to get the app going.

For Johnson, his near-death experience caused him to appreciate the gift of life even more.

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