File of Life

The FILE OF LIFE card enables EMS (Ambulance) personnel to quickly obtain a brief medical history when the patient is unable to offer one.

Imagine the following scenario. When Amherst Fire Department Emergency Medical Technicians (EMTs) arrive at the home of an Amherst senior citizen, they find the senior unconscious or unable to offer necessary information such as: Does the patient have an existing medical history? Is the senior taking any medications? Does the senior have any allergies? Who is their primary care physician? Who is their local contact person?

This frightening scenario is all too common for senior citizens and the EMT who treats the senior. That’s why the FILE OF LIFE, a mini-medical patient history posted on the outside of one’s refrigerator and/or carried in a wallet or purse, was developed and is being promoted by the Senior Center and TRIAD coordinators.

The card, which is kept in a red plastic pocket labeled FILE OF LIFE, lists: the patient’s name, emergency medical contacts, insurance policy and Social Security Numbers, health problems, medications, allergies, recent surgeries, religion, the primary care physician’s name, and designated Health Care Proxy.

The FILE OF LIFE’S Benefits are:
  • Faster help for Amherst citizens in emergencies
  • Corrective medical treatment can begin at once
  • Medical data is immediately available to the hospital staff
  • Peace of mind for the patient
  • Easy access to potentially life-saving information
  • Assurance that proper persons will be notified quickly
  • Renewed sense of community spirit

File of Life Cards are available at the Senior Center