Wollongong cyclist Michael Chapman is in the final days of a 4500km ride to promote a new app to help people locate the closest defribrillator.
Mr Chapman started at Cape Tribulation on September 1. His life saving solo ride down the East Coast of Australia will finish in Hobart on Sunday.
The month long cycle trek included him passing through Tamworth with his paramedic father Ian Chapman who designed the AED Locator App.
The ride is to raise awareness for the free app that helps first responders locate their local Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) in an emergency.
“Dad is a paramedic with NSW Ambulance in the New England area and created an app to try and find the defibrillators out in the community. It is a free app for individuals to download on their smart phone. We also want businesses to be part of it. They just need to register with us on the app,” he said.
“Wollongong Touch Association has just done that. The concept is that when first responders need it in times of emergency it is there for them to jump on their phone quickly and find the closest one. The percentage difference in survival rates between CPR and using a defib for someone who has a cardiac arrest is seven per cent for CPR and 40 per cent with defib.
“So it greatly increases the percentage chance of survival by the time you get to hospital.”
Mr Chapman and his father know that with every passing minute without CPR or AED intervention from a first responders, the chance of survival decreases by seven to 10 per cent.
Every year, sudden cardiac arrest occurs to around 30,000 Australians. The average Ambulance response is nine to 14 minutes.
Wollongong Touch Association administrator Robert Summers said a defribrillator is about to be installed at Dalton Park and has already been registered on the app.
Mr Summers now has a pacemaker himself. But prior to that collapsed at work and needed the urgent help of ambulance officers.
“Then progressively through a six to eight month period I was zapped about 25 times top get my heart back into rythm,” he said.
Mr Chapman said is heading a community project to encourage people to jump on board and talk to others about the app.
Because the more people who know about it and or where defibs are located the better the chances are of saving lives.
“Fingers crossed more community groups like Wollongong Touch Association can start that chat. Defibrillators are out there in the community. It is just people don’t know where they are. People need to know if they are in gyms and malls and things like that,”
- Survival rates without a first responder are lower than 5 percent.
- For communities with available AEDs and appropriate training courses, survival rates of cardiac arrest victims rises to nearly 40 per cent.
- Businesses are among those being targeted in a quest to register as many facilities as possible with onsite AEDs.
- The idea is for people to be able to locate them quickly in times of emergency.
- All Australians are encouraged to download the app to know where their closest AED is and understand the importance of basic CPR and Defibrillator training.
- Mr Chapman has been working alongside local emergency medical training organisation Parasol EMT in the communities he has been riding through to promote the importance of first aid training and the AED App.
- He has been riding more than 150km a day.
- Nine months of preparation went in to planning the ride.