Why a Nurse is Urging Everyone to Change Their Smartphone Settings

Imagine this: you have suffered an accident which has left you seriously injured and unable to communicate. Because of your condition, the doctors and nurses who are working to keep you alive aren’t able to easily contact your next of kin for your health history and potential allergies.  It’s a scary scenario to say the least, especially for those with special medical needs.

While it may be something we don’t want to think about, it’s a scenario that we all need to consider—mainly because there is something that we can do to help it!

In the past, people have opted to handwrite their emergency contact information and put it in their wallet, but these days, more and more are relying solely on their phones.

You see, most smart phones come equipped with an emergency contact and medical history feature, called Medical ID. This nifty tool allows anyone who comes into contact with your phone when you’re unresponsive (i.e. a medical professional), to quickly learn your basic medical history, as well as your preferred emergency contact, within seconds.

Before cell phones were smartphones, many people got into the habit of creating an ICE (in case of emergency) contact in their phone, but this caused a lot of trouble as the information was not useful unless the phone was unlocked. If you are still using this outdated system, it’s definitely time to make the switch!

Another way technology is helping to save lives

Not only does Medical ID give smartphone owners peace of mind, it has also become an invaluable tool for those working in the medical community.

doctor looking down at smartphonestevanovicigor via Deposit Photos

In a now viral Facebook post, nurse Julia Thompson sings the praises of this handy feature. She writes:

Working in a public hospital and seeing patients in ED all the time I see many patients come in and we have had no way of knowing who they are or how to contact their next of kin or their medical history! And their phones are locked!

But many people don’t realise that you and patients can set up something called a “Medical ID” on your iPhone if you have the health app (free with phone, not a hack). I didn’t even realise this when I got my own iPhone!

As it turns it out, Thompson’s post really struck a nerve with people. Since first writing about this relatively unknown safety feature, her words have spread like wildfire, having been shared over 160,000 times. It’s good to know that so many people out there are taking this nurse’s good advice!

Now, if you aren’t an iPhone owner, don’t fret. Although Thompson only mentions the iPhone Medical ID tool, a similar feature is available on Android. Good to know!

Now that you know about the many merits of this clever smartphone tool, it’s time for you to get yourself set up. Just watch the video below to get a full tutorial on how to input your own info. This is definitely a tip that should be shared with all of your friends and loved ones!

Had you heard of this iPhone Medical ID feature before? Have Thompson’s words convinced you to fill in your information? Has your Medical ID been used in an emergency?