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AEDs: Important Message from the Medical Director of the Seattle Fire Dept.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Christine Miclat
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Letter provided by the Medical Director of the Seattle Fire Department.



 June 24, 2017


Dear BOMA Members,


The Seattle Fire Department and Medic One would like to you to aid us with an endeavor that will

protect your buildings’ communities. The goal of our program is to map the locations of AEDs
(Automated External Defibrillators) in Seattle and King County, so to effectively guide anyone to

AEDs in cases of suspected sudden cardiac arrest.

Medic One and the Seattle Fire Department have implemented PulsePoint into the 9-1-1 dispatch
system. PulsePoint is a mobile app that simultaneously alerts CPR-trained citizens with the dispatch of Seattle Fire Department and Medic One when someone nearby is suffering from a sudden cardiac arrest in a public building.


The PulsePoint system has the ability to improve the frequency and speed of AED deployment by

precise mapping of nearby AEDs and showing them in real time to citizen rescuers in context with
their present location. Knowing where AEDs are located is crucial because without CPR and
defibrillation from an AED, an individual’s chance of survival from cardiac arrest decreases rapidly.


Using an AED within 3 minutes of collapse can save the victim’s life 75% of the time. The Seattle

Fire Department cannot arrive at most cardiac arrests within 3 minutes of collapse. Rescuers who
are volunteers with the PulsePoint app on their phones can, but they often do not know where the
nearest AED is located.


Today, only about 10% of cardiac arrests in public places have an AED applied before a Seattle Fire Department vehicle arrives on the scene. With your help, I believe we can do much better.

Collecting accurate AED information in the PulsePoint AED Registry is an essential step. We added the AEDs registered in the Seattle and King County AED registry already, but we know that there are many more AEDs that are not registered with King County.


We need your help to create a more accurate list of AEDs. A partnership with your organization

may improve our cardiac arrest survival rate. Your companies have close connections with their
tenants and therefore may be able to help tenants update their AEDs when they change locations.


By joining us in this mission, your companies will be "PulsePoint Connected.” Window clings are

available to highlight this status and demonstrate to your clients that your business has taken this
extra step to ensure the safety and health of your buildings.


Sudden cardiac arrest can affect anyone. You could help save a close friend or a coworker’s life in the future. Please join us by taking this next step to protect your tenants and visitors to your

buildings. The benefit of PulsePoint is the possibility of saving a life.




1) Is there a liability for the user of the AED?


Washington State has the Good Samaritan Law (RCW 4.24.300) that protects bystanders and makes anyone helping in CPR not liable for civil damages resulting from any act or omission in the rendering of such emergency care. As long as the bystander is acting with good intentions and does not intend harm, they are protected.


2) What about privacy issues and HIPAA?


The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) protects the privacy of

individually identifiable health information. On a ‘CPR Needed’ notification, the PulsePoint app
reports an address (in a public place) and a business name, if available, but individually identifiable health information are not reported to the PulsePoint application. If you opt-in to the CPR/AED notification, the PulsePoint server will store your current location for immediate reference during an emergency where you may be nearby. In this case, only the current location of your phone is stored (no movement history is recorded) and your identity is never known to the PulsePoint application.


3) What if a building is secure?


There is an option to mark a building as "Private.” We judge these AEDs status based on whether

they are available "most of the time, to most people.”


How to help?

1. Register your companies AEDs at http://aedregistry.pulsepoint.org/
2. Send this link to your tenants and make it a tradition to send it to new tenants in your welcome
3. Learn CPR so that you can help save a life and download the PulsePoint app.


Thank you for your time! We look forward to your help potentially saving lives.



Michael R. Syre, MD

Medical Director

Seattle Fire Department



To see the original letter, click here.

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