GoodSAM: A United Move To Tackle Sudden Cardiac Arrest

Written by | 05 Jun 2018

Ambulance Victoria has launched the life-saving GoodSAM app in Victoria with the support of fellow emergency services Life Saving Victoria, Country Fire Authority, Chevra Hatzolah and of course, St John Ambulance Victoria.

The smartphone app is a progressive example of how technology connects our community and plays an integral role in strengthening resilience. Designed to connect qualified First Aiders and medical professionals with the public if a Sudden Cardiac Arrest occurs nearby, this app will save lives.

How Does The App Work?

As the name suggests, Ambulance Victoria is calling upon all qualified Good Samaritans including First Aiders, paramedics, firefighters, surf lifesavers, doctors and nurses to register on the app, so they can be notified when their help is needed nearby.

The pre-approval process requires all registrants to provide proof of accreditation prior to being accepted and provided access to the GoodSAM app platform.

Once approved, the qualified and trusted responders are ready to jump to instant action, race to the casualty in need and provide vital CPR and defibrillation in an attempt to save a life.

GoodSAM will provide a boost to the chain of survival process.  Once a call is made to Triple Zero (000), the possibility of a Sudden Cardiac Arrest is identified and the location of the incident is confirmed, an alarm will be sent via the app notifying the Good Samaritan that there is a cardiac arrest sufferer nearby that needs their help.

The combination of an emergency ambulance dispatching immediately and the instantaneous alert to qualified responders in the area means that Sudden Cardiac Arrest sufferers will often receive CPR and defibrillation many minutes sooner, making a remarkable impact on the number of lives saved from the life-threatening health emergency.

Why Was The App Needed?

Sudden Cardiac Arrest is one of the leading causes of death across Victoria but the health emergency does not have to end in heartbreak.

The first moments after a Sudden Cardiac Arrest occurs are critical to the chances of survival. In each minute that passes without CPR, the casualty’s chance of survival drops by 10 per cent. Emergency ambulance services may take ten minutes or more to arrive at the scene which is simply too much time to wait for a sufferer to receive CPR and Defibrillation.

GoodSAM will play an integral role in the chain of survival when it comes to Sudden Cardiac Arrest, with nearby responders swooping in to provide CPR and Defibrillation in the first initial moments, providing them with the best possible chance of recovery.

The app is also linked to the Ambulance Victoria AED Registry, which will notify the responder if there is a Defibrillator nearby. Defibrillation before paramedics arrive has the power to double the chances of survival for those suffering Sudden Cardiac Arrest.

What Will The App Achieve?                 

More than 6,000 Victorians suffer Sudden Cardiac Arrest each year and sadly many lives are lost. The app will work as a tool of prevention, connecting nearby first responders to Sudden Cardiac Arrest sufferers to ensure First Aid is provided almost instantly, dramatically increasing the possibility of survival.

What Role Will St John Ambulance Victoria Play?

St John Ambulance Victoria encourages all qualified employees and volunteers to register to the app in a move to increase the number of lives saved from Sudden Cardiac Arrest in Victoria.

We will continue to work together with other Victorian Emergency Services providers including Life Saving Victoria, Country Fire Authority, Chevra Hatzolah and Ambulance Victoria to ensure our community is in the safest of hands.

How Does The App Connect To St John’s Wider Goals?

GoodSAM is a platform that connects people in the community that have life-saving skills and the  desire to do good, both on and off the job, and provide First Aid to Sudden Cardiac Arrest sufferers nearby.

The platform will play a monumental role in the community’s ability to respond and recover from the potentially fatal health emergency, contributing directly to St John Ambulance Victoria’s goal of 90 per cent of Sudden Cardiac Arrests in Victoria receiving CPR and 50 per cent of Sudden Cardiac Arrests in Victoria receiving defibrillation.


GoodSAM is an innovative app connecting emergency services and health professionals that share the overall goal of achieving the safest community possible. It is an incredible example of unity and the strength shown when working collaboratively.

All First Aiders, Doctors, Nurses, lifesavers and qualified health professionals are invited to register on GoodSAM, the more first responders registered the greater position our community will be in to prevent fatalities occurring as a result of Sudden Cardiac Arrest.