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In times that paramedics are called to an emergency, the immediate access to the patient’s medical history is very vital. However, this information is rarely available.
One good example is a senior citizen who calls 911. Paramedics come to the scene and the senior is not able to give any detail regarding their condition. Without the presence of this important medical history, the only way for the paramedics to determine is to collect all the medications inside the house and take them to the ER along with the patient. Obviously, there is much time that is lost trying to identify and collect the medications of the patient and medical history. In times of emergency situations, this could mean the difference between life and death for the patient.
Having a precise and detailed medical history which is quickly obtainable by paramedics in the event of an emergency should be placed in a top priority for all families who live with aging senior citizens or seniors who live alone. The solution is quite simple yet they are rarely put into practice.
Step 1: Fill up a detailed medical history profile and update it every six months. Refer to the list given below to know what are to be included in the profile.
Step 2: Place and secure the medical profile in a plastic bag with a white medical cross outside. Other things to include inside the baggie can be: EKG, DNR (Do Not Resuscitate), Living Will.
Step 3: Place the baggie on the door of the refrigerator at eye level.
Step 4: Place a 4×4 decal on the front door telling paramedics to proceed to the refrigerator to get your complete medical history.
What to include in your medical history profile:
Emergency Contact person
Current medical condition
List of prescribed and non-prescribed drugs you are taking
Description of drug sensitivity and allergies
Name of health insurance carrier
Group Number or Membership Number
Have you ever been informed you had one of the following?
Lung disorder – yes / no
High blood pressure – yes / no
Heart trouble – yes / no
Nervous disorder – yes / no
Digestive tract disease or disorder – yes / no
Any form of cancer – yes / no
Kidney disease – yes / no
Diabetes – yes / no
Arthritis – yes / no
Hepatitis – yes / no
Malaria – yes / no
Description of any blood disease or disorder
Description of any physical deformity
Description of any vision or hearing disorders
Any life-threatening condition (describe)
Personal Medical History
-Have you ever been hospitalized and treated by a doctor during the last year?
-Have you ever been advised to undergo surgical operation during the last 5 years?
-Date of your last physical
-Date of last tetanus shot
-Family history: include any information about the medical history of your family (begin from your mother and father)
Be sure to have all these to ensure of your safety and fast recovery.
Download our free Senior Life Saver Kit
Senior Fall Prevention
Most people don’t realize that slips and falls are a growing concern for seniors over the age of 65. The following are some facts that will point out just how big the problem is:
What outcomes are linked to falls?
Twenty to thirty per cent of people who fall suffer from moderate to severe injuries like bruises, hip fractures, or head traumas. When one suffers from any of these, it will be very difficult for them to get around and independent living is also limited. What is even worse is that this may also increase the risk of early death.
Falls are also pointed out as the most common cause or traumatic brain injuries, otherwise known as TBI. By the year 2000, TBI accounted for forty six per cent of fatal falls among older adults.
According to Bell et al. 2000, most fractures among older adults are caused by falls. The most common fractures are the spinal, forearm, hip, pelvis, leg, ankle, hand, and upper arm.
Many people who have experienced a fall and were not injured have developed the fear of falling. This fear leads to limited activities resulting in reduced mobility and physical wellness. And when an aging senior becomes immobilized and weak, this will also increase their actual risk of falling.
However, there are also ways for older adults to prevent falls:
Seniors may take several easy steps to have their body protected from the risk of falling. Follow any of the simple steps below:
Download our free home safety checklist and senior life saver kit for more tips.
PERS or Personal emergency response systems are devices that are used for homes to connect a senior or an elderly person to a 24-hour call center with a single push of a button. This comes with a transmitter that is usually worn around the neck as pendant or as wristband. When the button is pressed, it sends a signal to the receiver that is connected to the caller’s home telephone line. When a senior pushes the button, the staff that receives the call will immediately evaluate the situation; here, the staff will make an assessment whether he will call a paramedic or just call a designated friend or family member. PERS are mostly set up in a way to give the elderly the opportunity to talk to a call center representative from anywhere inside the house.
PERS is best for parent, an elderly, or a senior who is having a heart attack, slip, or fall somewhere in the house or even in the yard.
What are the things included in a Personal Emergency Response System?
A basic PERS package consists of two essential things: the equipment and the call service. The equipment will include the receiver console that is plugged into a typical telephone jack; it also comes with a battery-operated push-button transmitter that is usually used as a pendant or a wristband. When the user pushes the button anywhere in the house, it will signal the receiver console to connect to the emergency response center.
Like any other systems, the console serves as a communication medium between the home and the emergency response center and functions like a powerful version of the speaker mode of a telephone. If in case your dad falls or slips in the bathroom and presses his PERS button, he can have a simultaneous conversation with the staff who received his call; conversations are audible even when the console is in a different room. Like any speaker phone system, the range of communication may vary depending on the size and design of the house.
PERS plays a very vital role in the lives of our parents, the seniors, and the elderly. They literally serve as the bridge so that the person in the emergency situation can cross the road between life and an untimely death.
What does PERS mean?
PERS stands for Personal Emergency Response System. PERS works in simple ways and only involves three components:
When someone needs an emergency help, such us medical, fire, or police assistance, PERS users may press the ‘help’ button which will immediately send a radio signal to the console which is connected to the user‘s telephone. The console will automatically dial one or more of the pre-selected emergency phone numbers. One of the most important features of PERS is its capability to dial even when the phone is currently in use or off the hook.
When the emergency response center is reached, the caller is immediately identified which will then allow the emergency center to determine the cause of emergency, review the caller’s medical history, and connect to the appropriate medical professionals or caregiver. If in case the center can not reach the caller or know the actual nature of the emergency, they will notify the emergency providers to go to the home of the caller to provide medical assistance. Most of the ‘help’ buttons are water-resistant so they can be worn even in pools and the shower.
Two Types of Emergency Response Centers
I. Provider-based Centers: these are usually located within the area of the loved ones. They usually operate out of the hospitals and social service agencies.
II. Manufacturer-based Centers: these centers usually operate from one location, i.e., national center.
Personal Emergency Response Centers are open 24/7.
Do Personal Emergency Response Systems work outside?
Most PERS have a range of 200-400 ft. in and around the house. Range is affected by walls and other structures. For this reason, it is best advised to test the range of the Personal Emergency Response System first so that you will know the coverage area of the system used by your loved one.
PERS or Personal Emergency Response Systems provide independence and peace of mind for the senior using the system. For less than a dollar a day, you can provide the protection your loved one deserves.
As of today, there are a lot of medical alarm products coming into the market from places like China which have Bluetooth that is used to link with a GPS cellular phone. This way, the senior is required to carry a cell phone most of the time and makes sure that the bluetooth connection is always activated and that the phone should be successfully paired with the device. On the surface of it, this may sound like a new technological advancement but why should we compromise the things like setting the Bluetooth of the cell phone and compatibility of the devices use to the seniors or the elderly? And what if the Bluetooth function of the cell phone has been accidentally turned off or the device being used becomes interrupted? The cutting edge technology is actually beneficial for some industries but not in places where medical alarm systems are concerned. As a matter of fact, it’s not only those cell phones that have been into different stages of improvements, even medical alert systems do! But like any other things, technology really needs time to be tested and seasoned most especially for the benefits of the seniors or elderly.
Introducing the Medical Alert System that is ready to use out of the box. This type of alert system comes with a console in less than the size of a shoe box which can be placed anywhere around the house. In cases of emergency, you may press the medical alert pendant or the large red alert button on the face of the medical alert system console. This will immediately activate the medical alarm which will directly connect you with one of the company’s care specialists. After which, a live 2-way conversation will start and a family member, a paramedic, or whoever you like will be called. As an additional feature, you will benefit from the water proof feature of both the pendant and the medical alert button.
The moment you have plugged the medical alarm module into a power source and a phone jack, it will immediately become operational. Pressing the alert pendant makes a 2-way conversation between you and the central station; it’s like a big speaker phone. The well-trained specialist will be able to talk and listen to you inside your home after the emergency transmitter button is pressed.
For only $29.95 a month or less than a dollar a day you can give yourself, a parent or an elderly friend the piece of mind and a more secure lifestyle. It will be up to you to decide if what mode of payment suits you best: monthly, quarterly, or annually. For those who wish to pay in quarter or annual basis, the benefit of being discounted is applied.
MedFirst Alert is family-owned and MedFirst Alert truly cares about what they do; that makes MedFirst different among the others. MedFirst is equiped to provide your entire family the protection they truly deserve.
Recently, Newsday had an article about MedFirst Alert and our Senior Life Saver Project. The article was featured on Saturday, September 4th. The Senior Life saver kit is a medical information kit for seniors to keep in their home in the event of an emergency. Typically the kit is mounted to the refrigerator and a decal is placed on the front door or window giving instructions as to the location of the medical information for paramedics to see. The kit was designed with seniors in mind and is an invaluable safety tool to keep in the home.
Paramedics, EMS, and First Responders should keep a supply of the medical information kits on hand to give out during their community outreach programs. Quantities can be ordered in bulk and discounts available to medical personnel and in home care providers.