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New system means 999 crews can access medical data before arriving on scene

2nd November 2020 about a 2 minute read

A new digital system sends details of people’s medical conditions – and their exact location – directly to the 999 service in an emergency.

Under the new scheme data for more than 43,000 vulnerable people can be integrated into the emergency response call handling system.

The move follows a link-up between UK medical ID charity MedicAlert and the US tech company RapidSOS. 

Under the initiative if a call is made from a MedicAlert user’s mobile phone, the emergency services will be notified of any pre-existing medical conditions, allergies and medication before they arrive on the scene.

MedicAlert chief executive Kirsten Giles said her organisation supports people with a range of conditions including diabetes, autism, epilepsy and heart and lung related issues. 

Save lives

“Giving the emergency services immediate access to crucial and detailed information in many cases will save lives,” she said.

“By providing relevant information for individuals with dementia, or other cognitive conditions, this partnership will also support our police forces to care for those who may require additional assistance.”

MedicAlert employs registered nurses to verify members’ details when they sign up and whenever a change is made. There is also a six-monthly update alert to remind people to keep their details up-to-date.

Computer Aided Despatch

RapidSOS will work with the 999 service directly as well as through public safety software companies to allow its technology to recognise callers automatically via the CAD (Computer Aided Despatch) in control rooms.

The firm’s CEO Michael Martin said: “If a call is made from a MedicAlert user’s phone our platform will check this in the charity’s database in real-time, flag it up to the 999 call handler and display the relevant medical information on their screen. 

“Emergency crews will also have access to this information on their way to the scene of emergency via their onboard computers.”