American Heart Association Will Harness Health Data to Speed Emergency Response

AHA is teaming up with the emergency technology firm RapidSOS on a new tool to make patient health information available immediately to first responders.

The American Heart Association’s latest collaboration with the tech world could make a life-saving difference in medical emergencies.

This week, AHA announced a collaboration with the emergency technology firm RapidSOS to give first responders instant access to critical health data. The organizations will promote the use of a voluntary registry where individuals can create a profile and share personal health information that would be available to first responders in an emergency.

“Delays in recognition and treatment of time-sensitive conditions like heart attacks, strokes, and cardiac arrest can be the difference between life and death,” Michael Kurz, chair of AHA’s Systems of Care Subcommittee and an associate professor at the University of Alabama School of Medicine, said in a news release.

The program will help streamline a process in which patient information is often communicated verbally to the emergency medical workers. RapidSOS, which helps public safety agencies implement next-generation infrastructure for their communities, is built with this approach in mind.

“Seconds save lives during emergencies, and providing responders with medical information for a patient can make all the difference in the outcome of an incident,” RapidSOS CEO Michael Martin added. “Legacy 911 infrastructure, however, does not connect first responders with the medical data they need to provide the best possible care.”

The collaboration reflects the latest in a multitude of efforts to modernize the 911 system nationwide, a goal pursued by both telecom firms and the EMS industry.

The registry, which will be available to any EMS provider that uses RapidSOS, will soon accept sign-ups. Interested patients can visit the Emergency Profile website to see about filling out a medical profile.

(simonkr/E+/Getty Images Plus)

Ernie Smith

By Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is a former senior editor for Associations Now. MORE

Got an article tip for us? Contact us and let us know!