Medical jewellery and ID

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  • Some people with cardiomyopathy have medical jewellery ID in case they are unwell and need help. 
  • Medical ID includes details of the person’s medical condition, disability or allergies. 
  • There are many companies that make medical jewellery and ID, with different styles and types of information that they carry, so it is worth looking at a few to find something suitable for you.

What is medical jewellery?

Medical jewellery (or ‘medical ID’) is jewellery which has details of the wearer’s medical condition, disability or allergies. This is useful if the person is unwell, loses consciousness or is in an accident, as it gives medical information to bystanders and medical personnel which may be used to guide treatment. 

Medical jewellery often includes a symbol of a snake coiled around a staff: the ‘Aesculapian snake and staff’ symbol or ‘Rod of Asclepius’. This is an internationally -recognised medical symbol, and is a useful way of recognising jewellery with medical information on it. 

 

 

Who uses medical jewellery?

Not everyone wants to carry something with them that has details of their condition. But other people
find it reassuring to have something that explains their condition in case they are taken ill.

Medical jewellery is often bracelets or watches. This is because they are worn on the wrist, which is the first place medical personnel (such as ambulance staff) will check for a person’s pulse if they are unwell. Although some people prefer to carry medical ID in their bag or wallet, it is worth remembering that medical personnel may not check here. And you may not want to people to go through your personal belongings if you are unwell or unconscious.

Types of medical jewellery

Different companies have different types of jewellery, and vary in what they offer. For example:

  • some jewellery has information engraved on it (for example, on the back of a metal disc);
  • some jewellery has information inside (like a locket);
  • some have a one-off fee to buy the item; and
  • some have an annual fee if they link to a database that holds more detailed medical information
    (which you provide) that can be accessed by medical personnel.

Medical jewellery

There are many companies that make medical jewellery and ‘in case of emergency’ items, and new
companies are appearing all the time. The following are a selection of companies, including those that
other people have told us about. 
Please note: we do not recommend or endorse these companies, and other companies are available. (All the links below open in new windows.)

It is also worth contacting companies directly to find out more about what is available and the costs.

MedicAlert

  • Includes bracelets and necklaces.
  • Engraved with membership number, medical condition and emergency contact number.
  • Links to secure emergency personal records via your unique reference number.
  • Has an annual membership fee.

Medi-Tag

  • Includes bracelets, necklaces and watches.
  • Engraved with membership number and medical condition. Optional membership to an emergency
    telephone service for more detailed information.
  • One-off cost for jewellery, with additional fee for membership to the emergency telephone service.

SOS Talisman

  • Includes pendants, bracelets and watches.
  • Information is written on a strip of paper that is put in a water-tight ‘capsule’ (like a locket).
  • On-off cost for the jewellery.

Universal Medical ID

  • Bracelets and necklaces.
  • Engraved with medical information and emergency contact number.
  • One-off cost for the jewellery.
  • Has the option to add an interactive health record (‘MyIHR’) which includes more detailed information about medical conditions and contact details, which can be accessed by medical personnel.

Non-UK companies

Hope Paige

  • Bracelets and dog-tags.
  • Medical information and emergency contact details engraved on the item.
  • One-off cost for the jewellery.

Lauren’s Hope

  • Bracelets, cuffs, dog-tags and pendants.
  • Medical information and emergency contact details engraved on the item.
  • One-off cost for the jewellery.

Please note: when buying from outside the UK you may have to pay customs charges or import costs on your items.

Medical ID

‘ICE’ – in case of emergency (mobile phones)

Use a mobile phone to access emergency contact numbers under the recognised term ‘ICE’.
Anyone can call your emergency contact from your phone’s locked screen without having to know your password.

Some phones also have a ‘medical ID’ page where you can put in details of your medical condition, or an app that can be downloaded.

Message in a bottle (from the Lions club) 

A plastic bottle kept in the fridge (so that emergency services know where to look for it).
Contains a sheet of paper on which you record your medical information. Also contains a sticker
to put beside your front door so that the emergency services know you have a bottle.
Available free of charge from health centres, GP surgeries and pharmacies, and from the Lions club.

Next of Kin – membership system

  • Includes a membership card, tag for your purse or wallet and stickers (for example, for your car or
    mobile phone).
  • Carries your unique membership number, and a number for the emergency services to ring to access your details (medical details and next of kin contact).
  • Initial cost of membership pack, and annual fee.

MediPAL (ID card)

  • Credit-card sized plastic card with your medical information and emergency contact numbers.
  • One-off membership fee.

© Cardiomyopathy UK. April 2017.