Man who survived cardiac arrest helps launch Scas defibrillator app

From left, deputy director of communication at Scas Gillian Hodgetts,  Paul Steinle from Southsea and Dr Charles Deakin, assistant medical director for Scas helped 

Picture: Ellie Pilmoor
From left, deputy director of communication at Scas Gillian Hodgetts, Paul Steinle from Southsea and Dr Charles Deakin, assistant medical director for Scas helped Picture: Ellie Pilmoor
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A MAN who survived a cardiac arrest thanks to a defibrillator helped launch a new app showing the location of the life-saving machines.

Paul Steinle went into cardiac arrest at his home in Southsea last November and a defibrillator was used by paramedics to restart his heart.

It is important having defibrillators available but knowing where they are is just as important.

Paul Steinle

The 46-year-old spent weeks in hospital and said having defibrillators available and people knowing where they are is crucial.

South Central Ambulance Service launched the mobile app yesterday. It tells people where the nearest automatic external defibrillator is, should they come across someone suffering cardiac arrest. It will also guide them through how to carry out effective CPR.

Paul said: ‘The app is important. If it’s going to save people like me then it can only be a good thing.

‘It is important having defibrillators available but knowing where they are is just as important.

‘If someone in cardiac arrest doesn’t get help quick enough then damage can be done.

‘I would hate for someone else to go through what I have gone through. People should definitely download the app.’

The Save a Life app was developed for Scas by O2 and uses GPS to show a user where their closest AED is.

Although it was built by Scas, every ambulance trust in the country can upload the location of all its AEDs to it. If they all chose to it would – for the first time – provide a national register of every AED in the UK.

Deputy director of communications at Scas Gillian Hodgetts came up with the idea for the app.

She said: ‘It’s exciting to see the app here and launched.

‘Cardiac arrest is a medical episode that can affect anyone whether they are 16 or 60.

‘The app not only shows the location but it has videos as well on how to do chest compressions and it also has FAQs about using a defibrillator.

‘It’s so important that people download it and look at it just in case.’

To download the app, visit scas.nhs.uk/savealife.