The Provincial Health Services Authority in partnership with regional health authorities and Lifeguard Digital Health are launching a new made in BC resource called the Lifeguard App.

The app was designed to help save more lives and ensure people who use drugs alone have access to the supports they need.

Director of Substance Use with Interior Health, Corrine Dolman explains how the app works.

“A person can enter their information and use their substances and then a period of time will pass and an alarm will go off. If the person doesn’t shut the alarm off, then it will eventually send a text to voice call to 9-1-1 and alert emergency medical dispatchers of a potential overdose”.

Dolman, added the creation of the Lifeguard App has an interesting backstory.

“The individual who really pushed to get it developed is a person who is in recovery themselves and had a really good friend of his die of an overdose so it was a real passion of his to get something in place that would help reduce overdose deaths”.

Testing on the App showed very positive outcomes.

“One of the interesting outcomes”, Dolman said, “There was kind of an anticipation that there would be a lot of false calls to 9-1-1 but the number of calls to emergency personal that were not actual emergencies was super low”.

The app will be available for download in the Interior Health Region this week and Northern Health on June 15th.