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Wed, Nov 22, 2017 06:53 AM
Wednesday, March 8, 2017 issue

Medical Information Can Be A Lifesaver


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01/17/2007 - No one ever knows in advance when a medical emergency might happen. If we need urgent care and are unable to communicate, we need a fast way to get information to those who are trying to help us. While you might have a driver's license that tells your name and address, your medical or contact information could be scattered in your wallet or purse, making it difficult for emergency personnel to help you.

A number of companies have come out with small keychain tags that store your medical and contact information. For the computer savvy, these tags are small memory chips in a USB device. Plug one in to your computer to add your information, then put it on your keychain. In an emergency, the tag can be read by medical personnel who have a laptop computer. Some of the brands I've found are MedicTag and Medtag. These tags are capable of holding your medical records, too.

For a low-tech way to make sure your information is available, you can make your own ID card on a typewriter, have it laminated and carry it in your wallet.

Your card should include the following emergency information:

Your name

Address

Telephone number

Blood type

Any current medical conditions

Doctor's name and telephone number

List of medications you take

Any allergies you have

Name and number of a local friend or relative

* * *

NOTE: In a recent column I wrote that readers could order a free copy of "Growing Stronger — Strength Training for Older Adults" from the CDC by calling a toll-free number. I'd called that number twice to verify that it indeed was sending the book for free. A number of readers responded that they could only get the book for free by downloading it. I'm not sure why this changed, but it did, and I apologize for any inconvenience.

Matilda Charles regrets that she cannot personally answer reader questions. Do not send any material requiring return mail. Write to her in care of King Features Weekly Service, P.O. Box 536475, Orlando, FL 32853-6475, or send e-mail to letters.kfws@hearstsc.com.

(c) 2007 King Features Synd., Inc.

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