Frontenac Neighbours Saving Neighbours cardiac arrest response

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We're seeking volunteer responders for a new pilot program for cardiac arrest in Frontenac.

The Neighbours Saving Neighbours (NSN) volunteer responder program for cardiac arrest aims to increase survival rates for those who suffer cardiac arrest in our communities.



About 35,000 people across the country experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest every year. Paramedics responded to 276 cases across Frontenac County and Kingston in 2020. The probability of survival for those patients decreases by as much as 10 percent per minute before emergency treatment begins. Fewer than 12 percent survive. But research shows that a patient who is treated by a properly trained and equipped bystander in those crucial minutes before paramedics arrive may be as much as three times as likely to survive cardiac arrest.

That’s where you come in. We’re seeking volunteer responders from across Frontenac to participate in a pilot program and research study about the best ways to increase survival rates for victims of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

As a volunteer, you’ll be assigned to a team of other volunteers based on geographic location. You’ll be trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the safe and proper use of an automatic external defibrillator (AED).

Once trained, your group will be equipped with AEDs and you may be called upon by 911 communications professionals to attend possible cardiac arrest emergencies. Your role will be to assess the scene, administer CPR and use and AED if needed, and to assist paramedics when they arrive on scene.

This is all about learning new and better ways to save lives when seconds count.

This pilot program is conducted under the leadership of Dr. Steven Brooks and his research team at Queen’s University. Interested program volunteers will be asked to participate in the research component in which Dr. Brooks and his team will study the feasibility and effectiveness of programs like this one in rural communities like ours.

Please take some time to learn about the NsN program with the resources on this page. If you’re interested and think you could make a contribution to this important work, please complete the application form by clicking HERE.



™NEIGHBOURS SAVING NEIGHBOURS is a trademark of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada used under license.

We're seeking volunteer responders for a new pilot program for cardiac arrest in Frontenac.

The Neighbours Saving Neighbours (NSN) volunteer responder program for cardiac arrest aims to increase survival rates for those who suffer cardiac arrest in our communities.



About 35,000 people across the country experience out-of-hospital cardiac arrest every year. Paramedics responded to 276 cases across Frontenac County and Kingston in 2020. The probability of survival for those patients decreases by as much as 10 percent per minute before emergency treatment begins. Fewer than 12 percent survive. But research shows that a patient who is treated by a properly trained and equipped bystander in those crucial minutes before paramedics arrive may be as much as three times as likely to survive cardiac arrest.

That’s where you come in. We’re seeking volunteer responders from across Frontenac to participate in a pilot program and research study about the best ways to increase survival rates for victims of out-of-hospital cardiac arrest.

As a volunteer, you’ll be assigned to a team of other volunteers based on geographic location. You’ll be trained in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and the safe and proper use of an automatic external defibrillator (AED).

Once trained, your group will be equipped with AEDs and you may be called upon by 911 communications professionals to attend possible cardiac arrest emergencies. Your role will be to assess the scene, administer CPR and use and AED if needed, and to assist paramedics when they arrive on scene.

This is all about learning new and better ways to save lives when seconds count.

This pilot program is conducted under the leadership of Dr. Steven Brooks and his research team at Queen’s University. Interested program volunteers will be asked to participate in the research component in which Dr. Brooks and his team will study the feasibility and effectiveness of programs like this one in rural communities like ours.

Please take some time to learn about the NsN program with the resources on this page. If you’re interested and think you could make a contribution to this important work, please complete the application form by clicking HERE.



™NEIGHBOURS SAVING NEIGHBOURS is a trademark of the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada used under license.

  • Heart & Stroke 2024 Spotlight on cardiac arrest features NSN profile

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    Every second counts: Transforming resuscitation to restart more hearts is a special report produced this Heart Month by Heart & Stroke. It's a comprehensive overview and description of the current state of cardiac resuscitation techniques and technology in Canada. It's an excellent and informative read.

    Special thanks to go to Heart & Stroke for special mention in the report on Page 12 of the Neighbours Saving Neighbours volunteer responder program for cardiac arrest here in Frontenac, and NSN pilot study principal investigator Dr. Steven Brooks. National exposure for NSN by a leading partner in the fields of heart health awareness and resuscitation is most welcome and can only help to further raise the profile of NSN and programs like it.

    Click here to download and read the full report.

    Dr. Steven Brooks works with Neighbours Saving Neighbours volunteer responder Walt Sepic at a training scenario session, 12 December 2023.

    The NSN reference on page 12 reads:

    Relying on neighbours and technology

    Led by Dr. Steven Brooks, a professor in the department of emergency medicine at Queen’s University, the

    Neighbours Saving Neighbours initiative is a partnership between Queen’s University, Frontenac Paramedics, and Heart & Stroke. The pilot program started in March 2023 in rural Frontenac County in Ontario, to examine how trained community volunteers could respond to cardiac arrests, while first responders were on their way.

    “The volunteers have been thoroughly vetted and trained to respond safely to emergencies in their community and are equipped with an AED, along with some personal protective equipment and basic medical equipment,” says Dr. Brooks. When a cardiac arrest call is received by 9-1-1, if there is a volunteer within 10 kilometres of the emergency scene, they are sent to the location, whether it is a home or public place. The expectation is that because the volunteers are already in the community, they will be much more likely to arrive sooner than the paramedics or firefighters to start quality CPR and defibrillation.

    Dr. Brooks is also working with BC Emergency Health Services and the University of British Columbia to

    study the effectiveness of PulsePoint Respond, a 9-1-1-connected app, which is available in BC and Winnipeg. The app will immediately request the help of users when CPR is needed for a nearby cardiac arrest in a public location. Users will also be alerted of the location of the nearest AED. If more people who know how to do CPR download the free app to participate, there is the potential to save more lives. Visit pulsepoint.org/download for more.

  • IN PICTURES: NSN volunteer responders' training session, December 21

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    Some of our fine Neighbours Saving Neighbours Volunteer Responder Program for Cardiac Arrest volunteers gathered for a training and engagement session, December 21. They practiced their CPR, AED, and emergency response skills with Frontenac Paramedics in some realistic scenario exercises. We're so lucky to have such a great group of dedicated volunteer responders but there's still room for more volunteers.


    (The volunteer responders wore full PPE to make the exercises as realistic as possible.)
  • HeartSite.com, a valuable resource for NSN volunteers

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    HeartSite.com was designed to provide information to patients who are being evaluated and treated for a heart-related complaint. All contents are reviewed by physicians to ensure accuracy. Our objective is to educate. The information on this web site is meant to supplement and NOT to replace those obtained from your personal physician. Please consult your physician because a specific disease, test or treatment may not be applicable to your case. To facilitate understanding, tools and lectures were designed from the ground up instead of scanning in traditional textbooks or videotaping a slide presentation and then modifying it for use on the Internet. This site includes panoramic views, 3D animation, online lectures, narrations, streaming instructional video, and easy to understand animated examples.

  • Wolf Creek XVII Part 5: Mobile AEDs (study referencing NSN in Frontenac)

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    RESUCITATION PLUS VOL 16 - Christine M. Brent, Sheldon Cheskes, Maaret Castrén, Steve Brooks - Millions of out-of-hospital cardiac arrests (OHCA) occur globally each year. Survival after OHCA can be improved with the use of automated external defibrillators (AED). The main strategy for facilitating bystander defibrillation has been fixed-location public access defibrillators (PADs). New strategies of mobile AEDs depart from the model of static PADs and have the potential to address known barriers to early defibrillation and improve outcomes.

  • Thank you messages from Neighbours Saving Neighbours leaders

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    The Neighbours Saving Neighbours (NSN) volunteer responder program for cardiac arrest went live in Frontenac on September 1. It's the program that puts automated external defibrillators into the trained hands of volunteer responders who may be able to begin life-saving treatment in the event of a cardiac arrest emergency in the precious moments before paramedics arrive. It couldn't have happened without cooperation and collaboration among a large group of partners, participants, organizations, and volunteers.

    Dr. Steven Brooks is the NSN lead clinician/scientist in the School of Health Sciences at Queen's University.

    Michelle Menard is the Quality Programs Officer and Peer Support Team Coordinator at the Kingston Central Ambulance Communications Centre.

    Gale Chevalier is Chief of Frontenac Paramedics.



  • Learn CPR basics in minutes

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    Neighbours Saving Neighbours volunteer responders are trained in CPR and the safe use of an automated external defibrillator by Frontenac Paramedics. While there's no substitute for expert training and preparation, any CPR may be better than nothing during a real out-of-hospital cardiac arrest emergency. These two videos, produced by the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada and the Ambulance Victoria from Australia are great ways to brush-up on your lapsed CPR training or, if you've never been trained, to get some of the basics in case you should ever need them. The American Heart Association also offers a similar training page with video.






  • Neighbours Saving Neighbours system goes live

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    FRONTENAC COUNTY - 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.

  • Neighbours Saving Neighbours

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    Reporter Kelli McRobert has gone through the process of becoming a Community Responder with the “Neighbours Saving Neighbours pilot program, and she has prepared a primer for he benefit of readers who are interested in joining the program

  • Surviving cardiac arrest should not depend on luck

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    HealthyDebate.ca — By Dr. Steven Brooks — Surviving sudden cardiac arrest depends largely on luck – and it shouldn’t be this way. When cardiac arrest happens, every second counts. There are three things that need to be done as soon as possible to maximize chances of survival – calling 9-1-1, starting cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and using an automated external defibrillator (AED). CPR keeps blood flowing to vital organs while AEDs provide a small electrical shock to get the heart pumping again.

  • First NSN cohort completes in-person CPR/AED training

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    The very first cohort of 16 Neighbours Saving Neighbours (NSN) volunteer responders for cardiac arrest met for in-person CPR and AED training at Frontenac Paramedics headquarters May 8. Volunteer application response has been very good so far but there's still room and time to apply. The more volunteers, the better. Just follow the link to learn more -> http://bit.ly/4083Cn1


    The program is open to volunteers living, working, or spending time in Frontenac County, on Wolfe and Howe Islands or north of 401. Volunteer responders are trained by Frontenac Paramedics and equipped with AEDs. Volunteers are alerted by 911 Ambulance Communications Officers via mobile app when a cardiac arrest emergency may be happening nearby. Responders may begin CPR and AED treatment in the precious seconds and minutes before paramedics arrive. They could save the life of a neighbour, friend, or family member, and you could, too.


Page last updated: 16 Feb 2024, 03:15 PM