GoodSAM trial underway

GoodSAM Logo

Around 20 EEAST staff and volunteers are testing an alert app that could improve the survival chances of people in cardiac arrest.

The GoodSAM app (a nod to the Biblical story of the Good Samaritan) works by alerting first aid trained volunteer responders within an 800 metre radius that someone has had a medical emergency – such as a cardiac arrest. Under the agreement reached between the app’s developers and EEAST, when an appropriate 999 call is received by our control rooms, the Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) system will automatically alert up to three responders who are logged onto the app.

Anyone who accepts the alert will be given directions to the scene of the emergency. Nobody is obliged to accept the alert and if someone declines it the system contacts the next closest registered person it finds. Initially, in the East of England the app will be used to alert responders to people in cardiac arrest.

The system is already used widely internationally and by several ambulance trusts in England – including London and East Midlands.

Nicola Karabardak, Deputy Director Support Manager with the Ambulance Operating Centre, said: “This is a really exciting development which we’ve looked forward o testing out. We’ll listen to the experiences of our 20 colleagues and community first responders who have signed up to the app – and to the ambulance teams responding to the emergency calls they attended. After that, we expect to open up registration to any suitably-trained EEAST employee or volunteer who wishes to sign up.”

Gary Morgan, Deputy Director of Service Delivery, said: “GoodSAM is based on the theory that just as you are rarely more than five metres from a spider, you are probably rarely more than a few hundred metres from someone trained in life support. Rapid life support is particularly important in cardiac arrest situations. Every minute that someone who is in cardiac arrest does not receive CPR or defibrillation, their chances of survival fall significantly.” 

Published 10th April 2019

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