For the first time in medical history, the drone played a key role in saving lives during a sudden cardiac arrest. A unique achievement in the world took place in Trollhättan, Sweden in December 2021, when an Everdrone's autonomous drone delivered a defibrillator that helped save the life of a 71-year-old man.
“This is a truly revolutionary technology that needs to be implemented all over”, says the patient who now has made a full recovery.
Everdrone's Emergency Medical Aerial Delivery Service (EMADE), a new link to a series of life-saving measures in Västra Götaland Region, Sweden, was put to the ultimate test on the morning of December 9th, 2021. In the Swedish city of Trollhättan, a 71-year-old man was freezing on his way home when he had a heart attack outside the hospital (OHCA).
A bystander, who happened to be a doctor on the way to his job, used the AED on the patient after providing CPR.
The drone was developed with the Center for Resuscitation Science at Karolinska Institutet, SOS Alarm, and Region Västra Götaland.
Due to the combination of the emergency call, the immediate actions of Dr. Mustafa Ali, with the immediate delivery of the Automated External Defibrillator (AED), life-saving measures through defibrillation can be started before an ambulance arrives, and his life is saved. The time from the alarm until the AED was safely delivered to the door of the incident address was just over three minutes. After initial treatment at the site, the patient was rushed to the hospital and is now fully recovered.
“I can’t put into words how thankful I am to this new technology and the speedy delivery of the defibrillator. If it wasn’t for the drone I probably wouldn’t be here” said a 71-year-old patient who has recovered fully and is now able to return home.
Dr. Mustafa Ali's experience was equally enjoyable, despite the difficulties of the situation.
“I was on my way to work at the local hospital when I looked out the car window and saw a man collapsed in his driveway” said Dr. Ali. “I realized that something was wrong and rushed to help. The man did not have a heart attack, so I began performing CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) while asking another observer to call 112 (Swedish emergency number). A few minutes later, I saw something flying above my head. It was a drone with a defibrillator!”
Thanks to Dr. Ali, with the use of a defibrillator, life-saving treatment was started early and, in the end, meant the patient's life was saved.
“This is a truly transformative technology that needs to be implemented globally; A sudden heart attack can happen to anyone, not just adults with arteriosclerosis,” says the patient.
The drone delivery system in the Regional Västra Götaland has been developed and operated by Everdrone, the world's leading independent drone solutions solution. The solution has been developed and further developed in partnership with the Center for Resuscitation Science at the Karolinska Institutet, SOS Alarm, and the Västra Götaland Region. Activities are also supported by Vinnova, Swelife, and Medtech4Health.
"This is an excellent example of a real-world example of how Everdrone's advanced drone technology, fully integrated with emergency deployments, can reduce access to life-saving AED equipment," said Mats Sällström, CEO of Everdrone.
About 275,000 patients in Europe and 350,000 in the US, suffer from OHCA each year. About 70% of OHCA comes from non-AED toilets on site, and ambulance response times are often too long to save a patient's life. The chances of survival decrease by 7–10% per minute after a fall, and as a result, the current survival rate among OHCA patients is only 10%. The new Everdrone AED delivery service is a proven way to deal with this sensitive issue. The service can now reach 200,000 residents in Sweden and is expected to expand to many parts of Europe by 2022.
The drone system has been scientifically established to cut response times and the full study is published in the European Heart Journal.