It has been brought to my attention that I should be wearing an Medical Alert Bracelet. (Thank you mom and other loved ones that are looking out for me). After some grumbling and procrastination and some more grumbling I started looking at my options. I even brought it up at my appointment with Dr. C to get his opinion. Fine you guys win. I’m actually getting one. I know what information needs to go on it. Now comes the hard part. Deciding one which one to get. There are so many options. I’m still young, and while I’m not that big on fashion and style, I still want something that will look stylish but be practical. I also want something functional and that will work with the majority of my wardrobe. This definitely isn’t something I thought I would be putting a lot of thought into, nor is it something I thought I would have to consider at the age of 30, but here we are.
As I began my search I ran across the traditional clunky versions of medical bracelets that I quickly nixed as options. I am not loving the idea of needing one of these guys to begin with. To me, it’s like painting a Scarlet A, or a swastika on me. It’s a huge mark that says HEY SICK LADY RIGHT HERE! LOOK EVERYONE SHE HAS SOMETHING WRONG WITH HER!!!!! Of course this isn’t too big of an issue, I don’t hide my illnesses, I don’t shy away from conversations about them, if I did, I wouldn’t have started a blog about them. Still these medical bracelets just seem like a mark that is meant to clearly separate the sick population from the well population. I’ll get past that thought process in time. I know their true function is to quickly alert trained medical professionals and other people in the case of emergencies that you have a medical condition and to give them vital life saving information. I have Chronic Illnesses, and am on medications. Some of what is going on is labeled life threatening. I’ve accepted this fact, so yes I need one of this markers. Now that I’ve ruled out I don’t want one of the old style ones that looks like this one.
There are basically two types of medical bracelets available on the market these days, traditional and high-tech. Traditional ones come in all different styles. There are many flattering styles that I would consider (unlike the one above). There are some good points to both types, as well as some cons to both types.
With the traditional style ones your information is right there, on the bracelet as soon as your medical professional or individual looks at the bracelet. You have the text custom engraved. Problem is, you are limited as to the space, so if you have a lot going on chances are it’s not going to all fit. Also if your vital information changes, you have to order a new bracelet in order to change your information. This bangle style is an attractive style of the traditional style that I would consider getting if I went the traditional route. It allows for 3 lines of up to 25 characters of text. It would not allow up much room for information but I could get the important details, for the most part. It has a clearly marked medic symbol, so trained medical professionals would quickly know to check it for the information I was trying to get to them, if I was unable to communicate with them and wasn’t with someone who knew my medical history.
With the high-tech bracelets called MyID, your information is scannable by a QR code, accessible by a call center, or by pin number via a website. There are 3 points of access that the medics can use to get to your vital information. This information is conveniently located on the inside of the bracelet. Your information is entered by you into an online profile. You can have a free basic profile, or you can pay extra for a premium profile. The basic profile allows for one medical condition, limited medications and doctors. The premium profile is more advanced, allows for unlimited conditions, medications, and doctors to be listed. The benefit with this style of medical bracelet is that your information can be updated anytime it changes, no need to order a new bracelet unless you want a new style, or it breaks. They come in several styles and colors. Two of the styles allow for a metal slider that quickly alter medics of certain medical conditions or you can have it customized for an extra charge. There are some definite benefits to this style of bracelet over the traditional style of medical bracelet. My only concern is that there would be an added delay in the medics getting my information while they tried to scan, call the call center, or visit the website to obtain my information. That is leading to a great deal of nervousness as I try to make my decision. What if the server that holds my information goes down? completely crashes? How do I really feel about my medical information being stored on yet another database? It definitely has raised a lot of questions these past few days as I’m trying to decide.
Ultimately the MyID is winning. Pictured is the Cadence style and that is the style I will go with. The benefit of being able to update my information quickly and as it changes and not have to order a new bracelet and wait for a new one every time was one of the deciding factors for me. Another one of the deciding factors was that trained medical professionals are trained to check for medical alert jewelry, and with these on the market they are also aware of them, thus ready to encounter them. I will be ordering mine soon. I’ll be sure to take pictures and post about my personal experience of dealing with the company and the product once it arrives!
Which route would you go? Traditional or high-tech?