Invisible Bracelet Helps Paramedics, Patients

Wednesday, April 15th 2009, 5:55 pm
By: News On 6

By Ashli Sims, The News on 6

TULSA, OK -- When people have a medical crisis, they often are unable to tell paramedics their identity or medical history.

EMSA estimates it applies to one of every three patients.

A Tulsa company is launching a high-tech way to give paramedics vital information, when you can't.

The Invisible Bracelet is a card that can go on your key ring or child's backpack. The sticker goes on the back of your license. The creators say it could save you valuable time in a life or death situation.

When EMSA ambulances get to the scene, one of their first priorities is to stabilize the patient. But sometimes the one who needs help can't help medics with information.

"Paramedics have a lot of guess work, a lot of detective work that we have to do on a regular basis, on a daily basis, just to do our jobs," EMSA spokesman Chris Stevens said.

"If you talk to any medic today, the challenges of being able to get reliable information from a patient who is incapacitated, hysterical, confused ... it is a serious, serious problem," said Noah Roberts, CEO of Invisible Bracelet.

The problem became very personal to Noah Roberts last fall, when he demonstrated his new product, Invisible Bracelet, to EMSA.

"Not knowing that my mom was being transported by EMSA while we were doing that demonstration," Roberts said.

Roberts says his mother thought she was having a stroke, but couldn't remember her medications.

She's fine now, but Roberts says she proves how an Invisible Bracelet can be invaluable.

Instead of the old silver chain around your wrist, Invisible Bracelet arms you with an eight-digit code you stick on your license.

Only EMSA has access to a secure, Web-based profile that includes your doctor, insurance, allergies and medical conditions.

"It was a big deal obviously for me personally to say, 'Mom, if this happens again, you're safe,'" Roberts said.

It costs about $5 and five minutes to set up an account.

Arvest Banks are giving the virtual medical IDs to their 700 local employees.

"We are always looking to add value to our benefits package to employees," said Kim Adams of Arvest Bank. "We hope none of our employees will have to use it in an emergency situation, but it is there and convenient and available to them if need be."

EMSA says the product has the potential to save time and lives.

"Anytime technology comes along that will help us do our jobs more professionally, more efficiently, we are all for it," Stevens said.

Invisible bracelets are available in Tulsa, Oklahoma City and Grove. You can list emergency contacts on the site, and it will automatically e-mail or text them if EMSA has to take you to the hospital.