Aim To determine the effect of a new automated external defibrillator (AED) system connected by General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) to an external call centre in assisting novices in a sudden cardiac arrest situation.
Method Prospective, interventional study. Layperson volunteers were first asked to complete a survey about their knowledge and ability to give cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and use an AED. A simulated cardiac arrest scenario using a CPR manikin was then presented to volunteers. A telephone and semi-AED were available in the same room. The AED was linked to a call centre, which provided real-time information to ‘bystanders’ and emergency services via GPRS/GPS technology. The scene was videotaped to avoid any interaction with examiners. A standardised check list was used to record correct actions.
Results 85 volunteers completed questionnaires and were recorded. Mean age was 44±16, and 49% were male; 38 (45%) had prior CPR training or felt comfortable intervening in a sudden cardiac arrest victim; 40% felt they could deliver a shock using an AED. During the scenarios, 56 (66%) of the participants used the AED and 53 (62%) successfully delivered an electrical shock. Mean time to defibrillation was 2 min 29 s. Only 24 (28%) participants dialled the correct emergency response number (112); the live-assisted GPRS AED allowed alerted emergency services in 38 other cases. CPR was initiated in 63 (74%) cases, 26 (31%) times without prompting and 37 (44%) times after prompting by the AED.
Conclusions Although knowledge of the general population appears to be inadequate with regard to AED locations and recognition, live-assisted devices with GPS-location may improve emergency care.
- Cardiac arrest
- Emergency Care Systems, Efficiency
- Prehospital Care, First Responders
- Resuscitation, Effectiveness
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