I’m urging everyone to spread the word during Medical Jewellery Awareness Month – if you know a doctor, nurse or paramedic please ask them to keep a look out for medical jewellery on patients and you may help save a life.

MEDIA RELEASE – 16 AUGUST 2012 August is Medical Jewellery Awareness Month
Be aware – show you care – check for Emergency ID.

With the population ageing and allergies increasing, a growing number of Australians are choosing to wear medical jewellery featuring potentially lifesaving information; however, more needs to be done to ensure these details are discovered in emergency situations.

During Medical Jewellery Awareness Month this August people trained in first aid, emergency services personnel and healthcare workers are being urged to check if patients have bracelets or necklaces engraved with information that can save time and save lives.

Nicole Graham, Director of Australia’s largest medical jewellery provider, Emergency ID Australia, said sales had increased 40% over the past year, but the huge range of products on the market meant many people simply don’t know what to look out for.

“Medical jewellery is now attractive, comfortable and quite subtle, which is great news for the wearer, but also poses a challenge for emergency services, so education and awareness is the key,” Mrs Graham said.

“As part of Medical Jewellery Awareness Month, we’ve embarked on a national training initiative to encourage medical personnel to take a few seconds to check if the patient has emergency ID that could greatly improve their ability to provide care for that person".

“Emergency ID products have undergone major advancements over recent years, with thousands of Australians now wearing items that feature unique identification numbers providing access to on-the-spot health records and personal details via a 24 hour phone service."

A recent survey by Emergency ID Australia of more than 300 people who wear medical jewellery showed 90 per cent wear their jewellery “all the time - 24 hours a day” or “most of the time”. The survey also showed that the most important information they want others to have access to includes allergy information, medication lists and doses, and emergency contacts or next of kin details.

“Medical jewellery has always been popular with those with diabetes or serious allergies, but we’re now seeing a growing demand from the elderly, especially the 280,000 Australians currently living with dementia,” Mrs Graham said.

“With about 1 in 110 children now diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder, we’re also seeing an increase in sales of our kids range as parents look for peace of mind when it comes to the health and safety of their children.”

In 2011 Debbie Chilton, who has epilepsy and is confined to a wheelchair, was too scared to go out into the community alone and chose instead to isolate herself.

“My friends and medical team encouraged me to obtain a medical bracelet so that I could regain some of the independence I had lost,” Ms Chilton said.

“The medical jewellery from Emergency ID Australia has given me the confidence to get out and about and has enabled me to resume my community work, which has given me a sense of purpose again.

“Knowing that medical staff can access my details, especially the list of medications I take, and those which could prove fatal if administered, provides me and my family with real peace of mind.

“Unfortunately not all paramedics I have come into contact with know to look for my emergency jewellery or understand that they can call the 24 hour phone service to access my details.

“I’m urging everyone to spread the word during Medical Jewellery Awareness Month – if you know a doctor, nurse or paramedic please ask them to keep a look out for medical jewellery on patients and you may help save a life.”

About Emergency ID:
Emergency ID is an Australian owned and operated provider of medical jewellery and emergency ID products.

The business was founded by former Police Officer, Nicole Graham, who had seen firsthand the need for vital patient information to be immediately accessible in emergency situations.

At just 34 Nicole experienced a serious heart condition which required open heart surgery and sparked her search for affordable, attractive and potentially lifesaving medical jewellery.

After recognising the options were very limited, Nicole established Emergency ID Australia to provide greater product choice, and ultimately peace of mind, for Australians and their families.

People who benefit from medical jewellery and emergency ID include those with an existing medical condition, diabetes, epilepsy, allergies, dementia, children with special needs, those at risk of heart attack or stroke, athletes, those with mental illness or disabilities, and travellers.

Emergency ID’s product range includes bracelets, necklaces, key rings, lanyards, wallet cards, stickers, wrist bands and IDs for helmets, hardhats and shoes.

For further information, interviews with Emergency ID Australia Director Nicole Graham or medical jewellery wearer Debbie Chilton, or for high resolution images please contact: Michelle Newman on 0412 044 471 or michelle@newmancommunications.com.au