The freedom to simply live your life | Canberra weather

If you are like me, you are desperate to leave your home and go somewhere, especially with the opening of borders and a new phase of freedom.

Maybe you want to go on a road trip, go camping, or maybe planning Christmas with your extended family. But with these rediscovered freedoms comes the need to control risk and anxiety for the many Australians with hidden health concerns.

Having a health problem, allergy, or illness can be intimidating when going out and with the last few months of restrictions it would be understandable if you were feeling a little overwhelmed.

MedicAlert may be the answer to giving you the confidence to go out and really enjoy life.

It has been a long time since I last flew, but I will never forget our family vacation in Vietnam. As we landed there was an urgent call for all the first responders on board, to help a very ill passenger. As I approached, I saw a man in his sixties.

He looked swollen with a grayish, clammy appearance. I thought, could it be a heart attack?

He was making a strange repeated movement with his jaw. Maybe a fit, I wondered? His airways were clear, but he was breathing little by little.

His pulse was faster and weaker than usual. He spoke in another language and seemed distressed.

And then ? Maybe diabetes, maybe epilepsy – has he ever had seizures?

Maybe he has atrial fibrillation? I wondered what medications he was taking and if they were in his carry-on. If he had a pacemaker, was that also a defibrillator?

Had this man ever had heart disease in the past? What if he takes a blood thinner and bleeds inside?

The man’s friend did not know of any of his medical history. I had to go with what I had, which wasn’t much.

Reassuring the man that help was coming, I put him on some oxygen and he slowly began to relax.

The paramedics got on board and I explained what I had seen and done, but without knowing all of his information, I couldn’t add much.

The diagnosis is not always clear. There can be a lot of guesswork, even with the extensive training we have as medical professionals.

Patients may present with a range of seemingly unrelated symptoms that may correspond to more than one disease or condition. Without all the information, we are in the dark.

When a patient is in distress or cannot communicate, having information at hand saves valuable time and can even save a life.

A MedicAlert medical ID card would have answered many of my questions and given me a starting point for what to do, or just as importantly, what not to do.

Emergency physicians are confronted with it every day. Patient history and current medications provide first responders with deep and in-depth knowledge, saving them valuable time and leading to faster and more appropriate treatment.

Having these details readily available is where MedicAlert makes the difference.

MedicAlert members can choose to have their most vital health information engraved on their medical ID card.

If more information is needed, first responders and emergency physicians can access the 24/7 MedicAlert Emergency Response Service or the patient’s MedicAlert membership card for detailed information at the support of their membership file.

The man was lucky this time that the course of events was slow and the information to treat him was later discovered in a hospital setting.

Emergency events can happen quickly and some conditions require immediate action.

A MedicAlert ID and record is always available to give first responders your full story so they can treat you more effectively when seconds count.

You have the freedom to live your life knowing MedicAlert will speak for you when you can’t speak for yourself.

About Michael Bill

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