Medical Alert Awareness Month

A medical identification tag is worn as a bracelet, necklace or on clothing. It allows the wearer to be identified as an individual with a medical condition that may need immediate attention. This tag serves as a tool to provide information to emergency responders, physicians, and law enforcement personnel in the event that the individual is unable to communicate.

Typical conditions warranting a medical alert identifier are:

• Diabetes

• Anaphylactic Allergies (food, drug, insect)

• Adrenal insufficiency

• Pacemaker or other medical devices

• Blood thinners

Who needs Medic Alert?

Persons with any medical problem or condition that cannot be easily seen or recognized need the protection of MedicAlert®. Heart conditions, diabetes, severe allergies and epilepsy are common problems. About one in every five persons has some special medical problem.

Why Medic Alert?

Tragic or even fatal mistakes can be made in emergency medical treatment unless the special problem of the person is known. A diabetic could be neglected and die because he/she was thought to be intoxicated. A shot of penicillin could end the life of one who is allergic to it. Persons dependent on medications must continue to receive them at all times. Furthermore, the MedicAlert® emblem can also help in identification.

When is Medic Alert important?

Whenever you cannot speak for yourself- because of unconsciousness, shock, delirium, hysteria, loss of speech, etc. -the MedicAlert emblem speaks for you.

A New Vision

Today, with Paul Kortschak at the helm as President and CEO, MedicAlert® has gone beyond being just a bracelet company. As the baby boom generation ages, the average life expectancy lengthens and the incidence of chronic diseases rises, Mr. Kortschak’s vision is to have MedicAlert® expand globally to be the world repository of critical health and personal safety information, while enhancing the quality of life and safety of members.

As part of that vision, MedicAlert launched the MedicAlert® EHealthKEY, a portable USB-enabled device that allows for storage of medical records and history, in 2005. This product allows members to carry their complete personal health record at all times.

Tens of thousands of lives have been saved since Chrissie and her husband, Dr. Collins, acted on an idea. The idea, to create a body-worn identification emblem supported by a 24-hour emergency medical information service offering peace of mind, became a reality. It has withstood the test of time over the past 50 years. From index cards to the Internet, MedicAlert® has come a long way since the first bracelet was created for Linda Collins. The original bracelet is now in the permanent collection of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.

Today, with offices in 10 countries, MedicAlert® bracelets and necklaces are worn by over 4 million people worldwide. The dedication shown by Chrissie and Dr. Collins continues to be an inspiration to us all and serves as a reminder that our mission is as vital today as it was in 1956.

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