New Medical History Device Saves Lives: Scroll I.D a Must for Patients, also ER

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John Blanchard has developed Scroll I.D., a 1.5-inch by 8-inch waterproof document containing a person's basic medical history that is rolled up, stored in a lip balm-sized tube, and that attaches to a key ring, backpack, belt loop, or shoelace.

No bells. No whistles. No electronic circuitry. Just a simple piece of paper rolled into a small tube that could save lives. In this world of gizmos and gadgets, the newly launched Scroll I.D. ( is a brand-new radically low-tech method of communicating a person's medical history to hospital and especially to all emergency room personnel, which is precisely what makes it so effective in a medical crisis.

"When someone is in an accident or suddenly gets ill and is rushed into the hospital, paramedics at the scene and emergency room nurses and doctors don't have the time or resources to make phone calls or search the Internet for a patient's history," says John Blanchard, CCRN, CFRN, inventor of Scroll I.D. and an emergency room nurse who has worked as both a flight nurse and a critical care nurse. "Giving medical professionals immediate access to a medical history – and to a photo that links that information to the patient – can save lives."

Blanchard has witnessed far too many instances where the lack of a patient's medical history has hindered emergency care. "A significant amount of the information needed to make a correct medical diagnosis comes from the conversation with the patient about their medical history," says Blanchard. "Yet, one in five people who come into the ER are unconscious, and another three out of five convey inaccurate or no information about their medical histories."

Scroll I.D. helps prevent diagnostic errors by giving emergency medical personnel the key elements of that patient conversation in written form. The 1.5-inch by 8-inch weatherproof document contains a person's basic medical history and is rolled up and stored in a lip balm-sized tube that attaches to a key ring, backpack, belt loop, or shoelace.

The front of the document contains a photo, name, and date of birth, as well as information for an emergency contact, insurance carrier, and primary care physician. It also has a series of checkboxes denoting whether the patient wears dentures, glasses, or contact lenses, whether the patient is diabetic, has a seizure disorder or pacemaker, and whether immunizations are current. The reverse side of Scroll I.D. lists allergies, current medications, past medical and surgical history, and alternative therapies the person may be undergoing.

To obtain a Scroll I.D., consumers can either log on to and enter their medical histories and upload digital photos, or fill out forms and mail them and with pictures to Scroll I.D. They may also obtain Scroll I.D. through local churches, schools, senior centers, or other non-profit organizations that participate in the company's fundraising program. The medical history device sells for $24.95, which includes the scroll, canister, and four updates.

Dr. Nancy Trangmoe, a Board Certified Emergency Room physician, agrees that Scroll I.D. can save lives. "I wish that everyone who came into my emergency room had a Scroll I.D.," she says. "There are no downsides to Scroll I.D. It's a must for people of all ages."


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Elisabeth Lawrence