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World First Aid Day highlights how technology is making it easier to save lives

(IStock Photo)

Each year in BC over 2,000 people die from sudden cardiac arrest

World First Aid Day is an annual campaign to promote the importance of first aid training

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – From apps on your phone to portable defibrillators in public spaces, it’s easier than ever to save a life.

Survival rates for those suffering cardiac arrest have increased from three to about 70 per cent as more people get first aid and CPR training.

There have also been several stories in the past year of lives being saved thanks to the use of the AED’s in public.

Dr Andrew MacPherson, with the Canadian Red Cross says stats show the devices can double a person’s chance of survival after a cardiac arrest. “They have always been quite safe but they get safer. The ability for the AED’s to recognise heart rhythm problems that will benefit from a shock improves and in fact the type of shock has improved to the point that they become more effective.”

He notes there’s also an option now if you don’t have time to take a full course. “There is an Android and Apple App that you can carry the entire first initial parts of a first aid course in your iPhone or in your smartphone and be able to use it just in time. It’s free and gives you a lot of usual information up front.”

MacPherson was instrumental in getting automated external defibrillator training into first aid courses and notes the portable devices have cut in half the number sudden cardiac deaths in BC.

Each year over 2,000 people in this province die from sudden cardiac arrest.

Today isĀ World First Aid Day, an annual campaign to promote the importance of first aid training in preventing injuries and saving lives.