History of MedicAlert™
The way in which emergency medical information is provided is critical, and confidentiality is essential.
For more than 45 years, MedicAlert™ Foundation has promptly, accurately relayed information in medical emergencies, helping to save tens of thousands of lives. Its emblem and registered trademark are recognized and respected around the world. When emergency response personnel see the MedicAlert™ Emblem, worn by a MedicAlert™ Member on a bracelet or neck chain, they know to call the MedicAlert™ 24-hour Emergency Response Centre for instant access to information about the Member’s identity and medical conditions. No other emergency medical information service is as universally known and trusted as MedicAlert™, and no other organization matches its effectiveness.
Members subscribing to the MedicAlert™ Advantage Service can rely on MedicAlert™ to call physician and family contacts, so the Member need not be alone in an emergency. This capacity to reunite families is especially valuable to anyone with children. MedicAlert™ membership can help protect or even save a child’s life, because MedicAlert™ speaks for its Members when they cannot speak for themselves.
The rich history of MedicAlert™ began in 1953, with Dr. Marion and Chrissie Collins, a family doctor and his wife. When the couple’s daughter, Linda, experienced a life-threatening allergic reaction to tetanus antitoxin, they realized that Linda had to wear an alert message on her body at all times to prevent receiving a tetanus shot ever again. They also realized countless others throughout the world might have a similar need. So, in 1956, they founded MedicAlert™, a nonprofit emergency medical information service.
In the ensuring decades, MedicAlert™ grew to serve not only Members with severe allergies, but those with other conditions such as diabetes, heart disease, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease.
MedicAlert™ also serves those using medications that may adversely interact with other drugs and a growing number of individuals who simply want to make sure they are identified in a medical emergency and receive optimal medical care under any circumstance.
Membership includes 2.4 million people in the United States, another 1.3 million worldwide, of which over 45,000 are MedicAlert™ of Zimbabwe members. Emergency calls are answered by a dedicated team of trained staff.
MedicAlert™ Foundation’s success is tied to its status as a nonprofit organization, which ensures that Member service is always the top priority and confidentiality of medical records is strictly maintained. As a matter of policy backed by comprehensive procedures and technology, Member information is closely protected by MedicAlert™ and is never shared for business purposes with any other person or organization. The Foundation is mission driven, not profit driven.
The effectiveness of the MedicAlert™ Service is enhanced by the organization’s continual educational outreach to emergency responders, in the form of free training information.
MedicAlert™ continues to explore the latest technology to enhance its services and fulfill the rapidly advancing needs of emergency medical care, while always ensuring Member confidentiality.
Beyond technology, however, MedicAlert™ Foundation’s mission will be achieved through a unique combination of comprehensive service, long-standing partnerships within emergency responders, and worldwide recognition of the trademarked MedicAlert™ symbol.