Having heart attack? There’s an app for that

Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles County Fire Department has linked its dispatch system to a smartphone app that will notify CPR-trained citizens when someone in a public place nearby is having a cardiac arrest.

The Los Angeles Times reported Wednesday that the app, called PulsePoint, sends Fire Department alerts to users at the same time that dispatchers send the official messages to emergency crews.

Department officials hope it will increase the possibility that a cardiac arrest victim could get cardiopulmonary resuscitation from a good Samaritan while medical responders are still on the way.

The application also provides CPR instruction and the location of defibrillators nearby.

Officials say about 13,000 people in Los Angeles County — mainly first responders and their friends and families — have downloaded the PulsePoint app.