The Pulmonary Hypertension Association and MedicAlert Foundation Form Alliance to Safeguard Patients

Silver Spring, MD (July 28, 2011) – Furthering their efforts to provide support to pulmonary hypertension (PH) patients, the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA) has entered into a partnership with MedicAlert Foundation that will offer PHA members a discount on MedicAlert membership. By joining MedicAlert, PHA members will benefit from MedicAlert’s unique, live 24/7 emergency response/family notification services should an emergency arise. Additionally, PHA members who join MedicAlert will have the ability to store and manage an online Emergency Medical Information Record (EMIR), which allows them to maintain updated health information, medications, test results, and physician contacts. The MedicAlert EMIR has been designed in conjunction with the American College of Emergency Physicians to contain the critical information needed by first responders and hospital emergency departments. MedicAlert membership provides medical and emergency response staff with swift access to patients’ key health information, enabling them to quickly recognize patients with pulmonary hypertension and administer proper treatment.

“PH is a life-threatening illness in which the vessels in the lungs thicken and constrict, leading to heart failure,” says Rino Aldrighetti, President and CEO of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association. “Because the disease is not commonly seen by most medical professionals, a MedicAlert medical ID can lead to quick understanding and appropriate response in an emergency situation.”

Pulmonary hypertension treatments are complex and difficult. In some cases, standard emergency medical procedures may be life-threatening to PH patients. Proactive education of emergency responders and medical staff, coupled with MedicAlert’s live 24/7 identification and information services, helps to ensure that PH patients will receive the care they need in an emergency situation.

“We are proud to be working alongside the Pulmonary Hypertension Association in the effort to educate and advocate on behalf of the pulmonary hypertension community,” said Andrew B. Wigglesworth, President & CEO of MedicAlert Foundation. “MedicAlert services provide critical support for individuals with complex illnesses like PH by relaying vital medical information in an emergency. Our proven capability to speak on behalf of our members during medical emergencies has positioned MedicAlert as the leading communication service for the PH patient community.”

For more information about the Pulmonary Hypertension Association and MedicAlert Foundation’s special offer, visit www.medicalert.org/pha.

About MedicAlert Foundation

Established in 1956, MedicAlert Foundation pioneered the use of medical IDs and systems to relay vital medical information to emergency responders on behalf of its members so they receive faster and safer treatment. Today, MedicAlert provides the functionality of an e-health information exchange through an innovative combination of a unique patient identifier linked to an emergency medical information record and a live 24/7 emergency response service. MedicAlert medical IDs alert emergency personnel to a member’s primary health conditions, medications, and/or implanted medical devices. In addition to its live 24/7 emergency response service, MedicAlert Foundation also provides family and caregiver notification so that members can be reunited with their loved ones. MedicAlert services are available around the world through a network of international nonprofit affiliated organizations licensed by the Foundation. Learn more at www.medicalert.org.

About The Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA)

Headquartered in Silver Spring, Maryland, PHA is the country’s leading organization connecting pulmonary hypertension patients, families, and medical professionals. Its mission is to find ways to prevent and cure pulmonary hypertension and provide hope for the community through support, education, advocacy, and awareness. PHA provides free access to information on its website about pulmonary hypertension and facilitates over 200 support groups around the nation, helping many of the estimated 30,000 diagnosed patients in the United States. To learn more, visit www.PHAssociation.org.

Thursday, July 28, 2011