Patient Safety with Medical IDs

Does your patient need a medical ID?

Do your patients have a condition that requires a medical ID? Medical ID bands convey critical medical information. First responders can easily identify allergies, NOVACs, and important conditions.

Whether it's a new or old patient, you may want to introduce the idea of a Mediband. While medical IDs of the past featured metal, there are advantages to choosing a Mediband instead:

  • They feature food-grade silicone, which is hypoallergenic
  • A lack of chains means they're less prone to snapping
  • They're robust, allowing them to last for years
  • A lack of metal means no rusting

How your patients benefit from Medibands

Recently, the New Zealand Resuscitation Council advised that first responders arriving at an unconscious patient should check for a medical ID. Not all unconscious patients require cardiopulmonary resuscitation. As such, this acts as an opportunity for staff to identify a condition ahead of starting treatment.

When patients are unable to speak for themselves, Medibands convey essential information. For example, it could identify as patient as someone with Type 1 diabetes mellitus incapacitated at an RTA. Similarly, it could identify a patient who is taking warfarin and falls unconscious in the street. In many cases, an unconscious patient is a minor incident. With the right information, those treating them prevent it becoming a major one.

Studies reveal that mistakes made when a patient is admitted to hospital lead to mismanagement in their care later on. Not all medication errors cause massive harm. Those that do have significant effects have a big impact on the patient's life.

When your patient wears a Mediband, they will:

  • Communicate essential medication information
  • Make first responders aware of conditions
  • Ensure allergies are clear

As a physician, you'll know that a prompt diagnosis allows you to deliver the best care. Recommending a Mediband to your patients allows your colleagues to provide the care they deserve.

Which patients need to wear a medical ID?

Many associate medical IDs with anaphylaxis. However, there are many medications and conditions that warrant their use:

  • Alzheimer's and other elderly mental health conditions
  • Using blood thinners or having a blood disorder
  • Diabetes, especially in children
  • Seizure disorders
  • Cardiac disorders, such as arrhythmias
  • Rare conditions, such as lupus
  • Pulmonary complaints, such as COPD, asthma, or pulmonary fibrosis

Of course, you don't need to rely on our word. International research, non-profit and philanthropic organizations around the world promote them as well, including:

  • The Center for Disease Control in the U.S.
  • Alzheimer's Association
  • The Epilepsy Foundation
  • The Mayo Clinic
  • Johns Hopkins Foundation
  • The National Institutes of Health
  • The Merck Manual

With so many eminent organisations supporting the use of these IDs, it's clear experts agree they'll benefit your patients.

Another area of healthcare where patients may benefit is autism. Children with autism and ADHD often don't respond to the world around them in the same way as others. In public, this draws negative attention. In a medical setting, it may cause frustration and confusion for staff. Encouraging your patients with autism and ADHD to wear a Mediband ensures others know how to treat them. As such, they'll receive care and attention with dignity. 

What type of information does the ID carry?

The information on your patient's Mediband varies with their condition. For example:

  • A medication type, such as Rivaroxaban
  • A condition plus medication, such as AF and the relevant NOVAC
  • A condition alone, such as epilepsy
  • An allergy

In addition, the band can feature the patient's name. A first responder or hospital team knowing the patient's name is useful too. It allows them to feel orientated once they reach consciousness again. 

Evidence suggests that 95% of emergency responders and 75% of those working in an emergency room check for medical ID bracelets. As such, you can rest assured this information will not go unnoticed.

While patients may resist the idea at first, you can reassure them. These bands are not glaring and unattractive. With many people wearing charity bands, they blend in easily. For those who worry about drawing attention to their condition, it's easy to sell the benefits of maintaining their health. With an array of colours available, they can choose one that blends with their style.

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