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Two mobile apps could help save heart attack victims in France

Both help members of the public give vital first aid in the first few moments while waiting for an ambulance

SAUV Life and Staying Alive

40,000 people a year die from heart attacks in France Pic: Postmodern Studio / Shutterstock

Two mobile phone apps are offering people in need of emergency first aid a lifeline beyond calling for an ambulance.

SAUV Life and Staying Alive share the same objective of starting first aid earlier, especially for victims of a cardiac arrest.

Fast intervention saves lives

The former was developed by an association formed by members of the SAMU emergency teams found in most hospitals.

It claims heart attacks kill 40,000 people a year in France, with chances of survival diminishing by 10% per minute without heart massage. 

The average response time after an emergency call is 13 minutes.

Ambulance sent to phone location

The SAUV Life app, which is free to download, sends out text alerts to people in the vicinity of a heart attack victim, or where someone is bleeding heavily. 

This allows them to intervene and start heart massage or stop bleeding before the uniformed first responders get there. 

If necessary, guidance will be given.

The app also lets users quick dial emergency services, with the phone’s location transmitted to the control centre. 

App finds nearest defibrillator

Staying Alive, which was developed earlier, has the same functions but users must have first aid training before being directed to a call-out. 

It says it lists 120,000 defibrillators globally, of which 75,000 are in France, and claims the app is used in 60 departments. Download here.

Legal issues

In December, SAUV Life was ordered to pay damages to Staying Alive’s owner for illegally using its database of defibrillators.

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