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Missoula County Adopts Pulse Point

Missoula County's Office of Emergency Management has partnered with the app PulsePoint to connect CPR-trained residents with individuals experiencing sudden cardiac emergencies. The initiative aims to train 20,000 residents in CPR over the next two years, supported by a $60,000 federal grant. PulsePoint alerts citizen responders to nearby cardiac emergencies and guides them to the closest Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs).

Adriane Beck, the Office of Emergency Management director, emphasized the importance of public involvement in CPR to improve survival rates, noting that prompt intervention significantly enhances outcomes. Heart disease was the leading cause of death in Missoula County from 2017 to 2021, highlighting the need for this initiative.

Missoula Fire Chief Gordy Hughes pointed out that despite a 15% increase in emergency calls from 2012 to 2022, fire department staffing has not increased since 2008, underscoring the necessity for quicker response times to CPR emergencies.

The app is now available from the AppleStore and GooglePlayStore.

The PulsePoint app works by integrating with Missoula County's 9-1-1 Center dispatch system, notifying users of nearby emergencies in public spaces. It also tracks AED locations, aiding responders in providing timely assistance. Users must share their location with the app to receive alerts.

CPR certification is not required to join PulsePoint; a basic CPR class through the Missoula Fire Department or Missoula County Public Schools suffices. The Fire Department offers regular CPR training sessions, free for those seeking to learn, with a $25 fee for an American Heart Association certification.

Additionally, the county plans to host pop-up CPR training clinics at public venues like farmers markets. This program's goal is to empower citizens to stabilize cardiac arrest victims until emergency responders arrive, enhancing community emergency response and potentially saving lives.

The app is now available from the AppleStore and GooglePlayStore.


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