Neighbours Saving Neighbours system goes live

Posted On Friday September 01, 2023

The Neighbours Saving Neighbours (NSN) volunteer responder system for cardiac arrest goes live at 8 am on Friday, September 1.

NSN is the pilot program and research project that puts automated external defibrillators (AEDs) into the trained hands of volunteer citizen responders across rural areas of Frontenac County. When the system goes live for the first time on Friday, more than 60 trained volunteer responders across Frontenac become available to attend and begin CPR and AED treatment in the event of nearby possible cardiac arrest emergencies.

“I’m delighted to launch the NSN program,” says Dr. Steven Brooks, NSN lead, Clinician-Scientist, and Emergency Physician in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Queen’s. “Getting here would not be possible without the participation and support of our many partners, especially the first cohorts of NSN volunteer responders. I want to thank everyone for their participation and support so far. Your contributions help us to learn more about volunteer response and could even save lives.”

Here’s how NSN works: When Frontenac Paramedics are dispatched to a possible cardiac arrest emergency by Kingston Central Frontenac Communications Centre (CACC) Communications Officers, any nearby NSN volunteer responders are simultaneously notified through the GoodSAM smartphone app. If NSN responders happen to arrive on-scene before paramedics do, NSN responders can begin CPR and AED treatment in the crucial moments before paramedics can take over.

“It can take a few minutes for paramedics to arrive on-scene at an emergency, especially when we need to cover long distances to get there,” says Jason Kervin, Advanced Care Paramedic with Frontenac Paramedics. “That’s time cardiac arrest patients often just don’t have. Volunteer responders can make the difference between life and death for their friends, family, and neighbours who experience cardiac arrest.”

Learn more about Neighbours Saving Neighbours and to apply to become a volunteer responder.
Watch video of Dr. Brooks’ recent Cinq à Sept Research Talk hosted by the Faculty of Health Sciences at Queen’s University.
Learn more about Dr. Steven Brooks.