The Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association and the MedicAlert Foundation Partner to Offer Emergency Medical Information and Identification Services for Arkansans

Turlock, CA (May 13, 2010) - The Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association (AHAA), an advocacy organization that assists its member hospitals through volunteering and collective initiatives, and the MedicAlert Foundation, the leading nonprofit provider of emergency medical information and identification services, have teamed up to provide Arkansans living with chronic conditions, allergies or special needs with a MedicAlert membership that includes a personalized MedicAlert® medical ID and live 24-hour emergency response and family notification services. The MedicAlert program will initially be rolled out at the following seven hospitals: Baxter Regional Medical Center, Mountain Home; NEA Baptist Memorial Hospital, Jonesboro; Jefferson Regional Medical Center, Pine Bluff; St. Joseph's Mercy Health Center, Hot Springs; North Metro Medical Center, Jacksonville; Sparks Regional Medical Center, Fort Smith; and Northwest Medical Center, Springdale, with plans to roll out to the rest of the hospitals in the State.

"Lifesaving care in the emergency room demands information," said Carolyn Hannon, AHAA President. "The MedicAlert program helps ensure that vital medical information will be available to emergency physicians who treat acute illnesses and injuries throughout Arkansas. This program will help save lives."

"We are delighted by our new relationship with the AHAA," said Andrew B. Wigglesworth, President and CEO of MedicAlert Foundation. "The MedicAlert Foundation was started by a physician to protect people in medical emergencies and we believe this relationship goes right to the heart of our mission and history. The AHAA has a long tradition of outstanding efforts as an advocate for Arkansans and we are privileged to have the opportunity to work in alliance with them."

The MedicAlert program will provide comprehensive services that will help safeguard and identify individuals in an emergency. Members enrolled in the program will receive a personalized MedicAlert medical ID and emergency wallet card that provide first responders with identification information and details on any critical medical conditions, including medications, life-threatening allergic reactions, and implantable medical devices. All calls to the MedicAlert 24-hour emergency response center are answered by specially trained staff who provide vital information to first responders.

MedicAlert + Alzheimer's Association Safe Return is a 24-hour nationwide emergency response service for individuals with Alzheimer's or a related dementia who wander or have a medical emergency. MedicAlert Foundation provides 24-hour, nationwide assistance, no matter when or where the person is reported missing. The MedicAlert+Safe Return program also ensures that whenever MedicAlert responds to an emergency call, designated contacts or caregivers will be notified if an individual afflicted with dementia is located or requires emergency medical treatment in a caregiver's absence.

About the Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association

The Arkansas Hospital Auxiliary Association is an advocacy organization that assists its member hospitals through volunteering and collective initiatives which facilitate the integration and improvement of the delivery of healthcare services throughout the great state of Arkansas. Visit www.arkhospitals.org/auxiliary.htm for more information.

About MedicAlert Foundation

MedicAlert Foundation pioneered the first emergency medical information and identification service in 1956 to provide people with a simple but effective method for communicating their medical conditions. Since the organization's founding, MedicAlert Foundation has provided services and products that help to protect and save lives for its 4 million members worldwide. For more than 50 years, the nonprofit has relayed vital medical information on behalf of its members to emergency responders so they receive faster and safer treatment. MedicAlert medical IDs alert emergency personnel to a member's primary health conditions. In addition to its 24-hour emergency response service, MedicAlert Foundation also provides family notification so that members can be reunited with their loved ones. Visit www.medicalert.org for more information.

Thursday, May 13, 2010