Sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death worldwide. Among all cases in America, out-of-hospital cardiac arrests take the vast majority, 62%.
Just after one minute after cardiac arrest, brain cells without oxygen begin to die. Therefore, time plays a very important role: Keeping the flow of oxygen to the brain of the patient is crucial to increase the chances of survival. Emergency Medical Services response times can average 7–12 minutes, or even longer. Therefore, early CPR provided by bystanders can keep the victim alive, doubling or tripling the chances of survival. Despite the progress achieved by foundations, training centers, and hospitals over the last decades to train the whole population, only 70% of trained people in CPR cannot perform correctly 3 months after the training.
This project, based on in-depth user studies and research articles, explores the possibility of helping laypeople maintain their skills for longer and exploring areas that are currently overlooked by educators such as identifying cardiac arrest.
The result is Vivi, a training system that helps companies maintain their workers CPR skills. It consists of a new mannequin, and interactive app, a service and a proposal for a new business model to ensure more frequent, focused and relevant CPR training at laypeople's place at work. Vivi helps CPR training companies organize self-guided recurrent training sessions efficiently with clients by sending self-led training equipment on-site. It makes CPR training more contextualized, accessible and sustainable for all workplaces, therefore increasing the number of people trained and confident to save a life when the time comes.
This project, based on in-depth user studies and research articles, tackled the challenge of improving the skill retention of laypeople and explored areas that are currently overlooked by educators such as identifying cardiac arrest.
Sudden cardiac arrest is a leading cause of death worldwide. Among all SCAs in America, out-of-hospital cardiac arrests take the vast majority, 62%. Just after one minute after cardiac arrest, brain cells without oxygen begin to die. Therefore, time plays a very important role: Keeping the flow of oxygen to the brain of the patient is crucial to increase the chances of survival. Emergency Medical Services response times can average 7–12 minutes, or even longer. Therefore, early CPR provided by bystanders can keep the victim alive, doubling or tripling the chances of survival. Despite the progress achieved by foundations, training centers and hospitals over the last decades, only 70% of trained people in CPR cannot perform correctly 3 months after the training.
Secondly, according to research, most of the bystanders that witness a cardiac arrest are not able to decide whether to start CPR, because in 80% of the cases it is initiated by the Emergency medical service dispatcher.
Finally, according to the research conducted during the project, nowadays it is very difficult for client companies to set up any kind of training, as it takes too much effort to find the right date when most of their employees can participate. Furthermore, these workplaces do not have methods, materials, time or mentor to conduct it by themselves to maintain their employees' skills. From the point of view of the training school, sending an instructor with all the learning equipment to the client's company to conduct frequent training sessions is too pricey, and therefore unsustainable from a business perspective.
The Master thesis project was done in collaboration with Laerdal Medical. It started from an open perspective with the goal of finding the main areas of improvement of cardiac arrest situations. Initial desk research on what are the current barriers and enablers of people acting on a cardiac arrest helped gain a deeper understanding of the status quo from a scientific point of view. Secondary research was done in New York, in collaboration with the CPR training school Emergency Skills Incorporated. During the visit, different stakeholders such as program managers, directors, instructors, and students were interviewed and participated in a Co-creation workshop. 6 different CPR training sessions were observed to understand the student’s learning processes. The main learnings were:
- Both trained and untrained bystanders are not confident enough to start CPR in a real scenario. In 80% of cases, the decision to start CPR is initiated by the Emergency Medical Services call dispatcher.
- CPR skills decay quickly after the course. Only 30% of students can perform correctly after 3 months.
- Client companies are not training their employees because they are difficult to arrange or because they are too expensive.
- Delivery and preparation of the equipment are time-consuming and frustrating for CPR schools.
The ideation process was conducted through various iterations, with ideation workshops, receiving feedback from users and testing prototypes while teaching CPR to other people. This process helped to validate concepts and learn from the mistakes made.
- CPR skill maintenance as a business opportunity for CPR schools
- Optimized training reduces clients’ expenses on training
- Enhanced student confidence on cardiac arrest identification
- Increased student engagement
What makes Vivi unique?
A service to support workplace safety managers maintain their colleagues CPR skills
Vivi's subscription-based service provides an easy way for workplace safety managers, such as human resources departments or caretakers to set up more frequent refresher training sessions. It reminds them every few months after the initial training and helps them find the right training times for the right people and book the equipment in an efficient way.
Optimizing the space when transporting several mannequins can save huge expenses for CPR training companies. Vivi's chest compresses by 50% to fit more mannequins per bag and quickly self-inflate by using an intuitive air valve activated by the participants.
Self-guided training that improves learning
During the training sessions, Vivi facilitates self-guided, short training sessions. The participants use a web application on their phones that will guide them through, with no need for external instructors.
Ensuring confidence when it matters
Vivi challenges participants using different scenarios, helping students identify commonly misleading cardiac arrest signs such as agonal breathing, helping them become more confident in identifying cardiac arrest victims and making the decision to start CPR. An AI 911 dispatcher adapts to every participant's skill level depending on what they remember, giving ongoing audio feedback to improve their performance and helping them understand that they are not alone when facing such stressful situations.