Emergency medical workers called to a home where a victim is alone can lose precious minutes trying to gather information about the person's medications, allergies and illnesses. "Vial of LIFE" kits can help.
Sponsored by the Bellevue Network on Aging, the Medic One Foundation and Bartell Drugs, each kit includes forms filled out by patients including current medical conditions, medications, allergies and contact information. The forms fit into five-inch vials, kept in the refrigerator.
Also in each kit is a red decal for the patient's front door and a refrigerator magnet, both which direct EMTs to the Vial of LIFE (life-saving information for emergencies). The kits can be especially helpful on the Eastside, where more than one in four adults 65 and older lives alone.
While supplies last, the kits can be found in several Eastside locations, including:
- Fire stations in Bellevue (free)
- North Bellevue Community Center, 4063 148th Ave. NE, Bellevue (free)
- Bartell drug stores in Bellevue and Kirkland ($1 at the register)
In addition, Bellevue participants of Meals on Wheels and Bellevue YMCA will receive the kits this month. The Bellevue Network on Aging and the Kirkland Senior Council distributed 600 vials to participants of last month’s Northwest Senior Games.
The Vial of L.I.F.E. form is easy to read and fill out, but should be kept up to date, and copies of the form may also be kept in a wallet and/or car. Additional forms can be downloaded from the Medic One Foundation. Copies of a durable power of attorney for health care or a "do not resuscitate" form can also be placed in the vial.
The Vial of LIFE and a similar "File of Life" program are used in communities around the country. For more information about Bellevue's program, contact Cathy VonWald, Bellevue Parks & Community Services Aging Services, 425-452-4200 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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