Feb 15, 2012 NEW YORK - Linda Cotter-Forbes and Kim Traudt, both of Rhinebeck, New York, were recognized yesterday at an awards ceremony at the New York Athletic Club for being first place winners in the inaugural iRescU AED Scavenger Hunt Challenges. Linda participated in the November Challenge and geo-located 37 AEDs during a brief period. Kim participated the December Challenge and, and thanks to coaching by Linda, found 81 AEDs over a two-week period. The Challenges were launched during the 2011 American Heart Association Conference in November, and mHealth Summit in December.
Second place winner was Brittany Bogle, also with a record-breaking effort, and runner up was Darren Forbes.
Pictured L-R: Bonnie Arkus, Linda Cotter-Forbes, Dr. Nadine Levick
Linda was highly motivated as her daughter, Kaitlin Forbes, survived sudden cardiac arrest at Rhinebeck, NY, High School in 2005, thanks to her school's foresight and preparation. Linda's both individual and coaching efforts set a new world record for any one person's effort geolocating AEDs during a brief scavenger hunt.
Picture 1 L-R: Linda Cotter-Forbes, Dan Ladner
"I am thrilled to have won the AED," said Linda, "as I have a true passion for ensuring that AEDs are widely available for public access. Our daughter, Kaitlin, is living proof that access to AEDs is not only important--it's the difference between life and death! AEDs are incredible lifesaving tools that nearly anyone can use to save a life."
Picture 2 L-R: Dr. Levick and Dan Ladner
Picture 3 L-R: Darren Forbes receives award T-shirt with e-tag, from Dr. Levick
"Using social media and crowd sourcing
to geolocate AEDs can fill the void in the chain of survival for victims of sudden cardiac arrest," said Dr. Nadine Levick, an emergency room physician who founded the iRescU project. Levick discussed the history behind choosing the Athletic Club as the
location whereby club member Dr. Barry Paul Pariser, a physician, saved the life of fellow fencing partner, Nickolas Muray nearly 50 years ago to the day - February 9, 1961.
"This was before AEDs were available, and CPR was just being introduced. Dr. Pariser had to resort to opening the chest with a knife and manually massaging the heart until
an ambulance crew could transport Mr. Muray to the hospital for defibrillation to occur" Dr. Levick related.
Mr. Muray went on to continue fencing at the club. He died of a heart attack some four and a half years later,
during another fencing competition. Mr. Muray was born February 15,1892 and died November 2, 1965. Click here to learn more about the colorful life of world reknowned photographer and Olympic fencer Nickolas Muray.
iRescU is a new public health outreach initiative, led by Nadine Levick, MD, MPH, of the EMS Safety Foundation. The iRescU project a powerful social media driven system, which is under development, will help save lives using crowd sourcing, cloud-based technology, and smartphones to improved sudden cardiac arrest outcomes. The iRescU Project assists in making the 911 call, current CPR prompting and geolocation of AEDs. Its front end iRescU app will be available free on smartphones on all platforms in the near future.
Bonnie Arkus, President of the Women's Heart Foundation, and a member of the iRescU global interdisciplinary team, presented Kim's first place prize--an automated external defibrillator donated to the Women's Heart Foundation by Defibtech. Mary Newman, President of the SCA Aware, presented Linda's first place prize - an automated external defibrillator donated to the Sudden Cardiac Arrest Foundation by Cardiac Science.
"We know that approximately 1,000 people a day in the USA die from sudden out of hospital cardiac arrest, in the streets, workplaces, homes, schools and playgrounds of our communities, and some of whom daily are children. The ambulance just can't be there in 3 minutes, before brain death commences. We also know that approximately 80% sudden cardiac arrests have a reversible or 'shockable' rhthym. Yet in fewer than 2% is an AED ever used by a bystander", says Dr. Nadine Levick.
"The Rhinebeck individual efforts of Linda and Kim in the AED Challenges of geolocating 31 and 81 AEDS, and also Brittany Bogle, the second place winner from Chicago with 68 AEDs geolocated, are world record breaking efforts.
The dedicated work of these three women has demonstrated clearly that reaching out into the community and harnessing social media is a powerful approach to enhance the effectiveness of the tools we have to address sudden cardiac arrest."
Dr. Levick summarized: "The iRescU Project is a small step for technology, and giant leap for public health in the quest to improve sudden cardiac arrest outcomes."
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