For decades, MedicAlert Foundation® has actively strived to carry out the heart of our mission-to protect & save lives. Today, our dedicated team is proud to celebrate our 59th anniversary. It is with the collaborative efforts of our staff members, partners, generous donors, and valued members that we’ve been able to enhance our life-saving products and services throughout the years.
Our Humble Beginning
Our story began in the summer of 1953 in the farming community of Turlock, California. While her parents were away on vacation, 14-year old Linda Collins-daughter of Dr. Marion Collins, cut her finger badly enough to require a trip to a nearby hospital.
Following standard protocol, Linda’s uncle performed a skin test before injecting Linda with a full dose of tetanus antitoxin, which contained horse serum. Within moments, Linda went into anaphylactic shock which nearly killed her.
“My parents realized that if one tiny drop of the antitoxin had produced that reaction I’d probably be killed by a full dose,” she recalled. “Thereafter, when I went away from home for a weekend or to a neighboring town for school events, they’d attach a note to my coat or have me wear a paper bracelet describing my allergies.”
The First MedicAlert Bracelet
Linda came up with the concept of a silver bracelet with “Allergic to Tetanus Antitoxin” engraved on the back. Dr. Collins added “MEDIC ALERT" and the symbol of the medical profession to the front. The design was sent to a local San Francisco jeweler who created the first MedicAlert® bracelet.
After several years of consulting with other professionals, Dr. Collins established MedicAlert Foundation International, a nonprofit, tax-exempt, and charitable organization. Dr. Collins said more than once, “We are not here to make money. We are here to save lives.”
MedicAlert Foundation Today
Decades later, MedicAlert is honored to have the continued capabilities to carry out Dr. Collins’ initial vision of protecting and saving lives.
With the united support of millions of our members worldwide, 9 international affiliates, and over twenty-five partners, MedicAlert Foundation now has a stronger and more reliable 24/7 life-saving support network than ever before.
We continue to offer services found “behind the bracelet” that no other emergency medical ID provider in today’s market can match when it comes to saving your life and the lives of those you love during an emergency.