An iPhone app could help save your life in case of emergency

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(WBKO) -- If you have an iPhone, and it's up-to-date, there's a feature that lets friends or first responders access medical information without unlocking your phone.

Apple's "Medical ID" can be found by pressing the lock button five times in succession, or under the emergency tab located on the lock screen.

However, you will need to set it up before it will show up, and here's how you can do that:

You'll find the "Medical ID" option under the app health, where you can enter information such as birthday, blood type, medical conditions, medical notes, allergies and reactions, and medications.

You can also list an emergency contact with a phone number.

Jim Williams of Med Center EMS told 13 News something like "Medical ID" can help first responders or friends in case of an emergency.

"By having another resource available," he said, "whether it be an app on a cell phone or something that a person has already written down ahead of time, that's going to give a big jump on how efficient our care is going to be."

Williams urges people to be careful when testing their "Medical ID" because another option on the same screen sends out an emergency stress call to 911.

There are similar apps available for Android users as well.

There a number of preemptive steps people can take to help first responders, WIlliams said.

One of those is a program by the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety in conjunction with several other agencies called the Yellow Dot program.

"A person can fill out [a form] and put in the glove box of their car" Williams explained, "and you can get a yellow dot sticker that you place on your car and that tells us as emergency responders, 'hey take a look in my glove box if I'm unconscious' and we can retrieve that information to treat you."

Another program that people can access is the Vial of Life, which Williams said is basically just a big pill bottle that has a form rolled up inside of it.

"We usually recommend a person put that in the refrigerator with a magnet on the refrigerator that alerts us so if we come into your home and you're unconscious and nobody knows what's going on,"
he continued. "If if we take a real quick glimpse in your kitchen when we see that magnet we know look in your refrigerator retrieve that vial so we can get that information."

Information on The Yellow Dot Program can be found here.

And for the Vial of Life, here.

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