Be Prepared, Not Scared

In my family, we are big believers in having a “Just in Case” plan. You know, such as keeping jumper cables, emergency kit, flashlight, blanket, etc,. in the trunk if you break down. The Crankee Yankee (my husband) and I also keep a pantry downstairs stocked with non-perishables like canned tuna, tomato sauce, beans, bottled water, sardines, pasta, vegetables, fruits, etc., as well as canned and dry cat food.

Additionally, I’ve always kept an “Emergency Information” folder (well, it’s really a sheet of 8″ x 11″ printer paper, folded up and placed near my drivers license) in my wallet. This way, if something happens and I’m unconscious or unable to communicate, all a rescuer needs to know will be right there in my emergency information.

This is a template you are welcome to use for your own Emergency Information. Having this on you will save valuable time and get you the help you need ASAP. FYI: Do NOT put in your social security number!

EMERGENCY INFORMATION FOR {NAME AND DATE}

Name:

Address:

Home Phone:

Cell Phone:

Email:

Date of Birth:

Age:

Blood Type:

Organ Donor:

RECENT MEDICAL HISTORY

  • {LIST MOST RECENT MEDICAL HISTORY¬† WITH DATES, DOCTORS AND THEIR CONTACT INFORMATION, ETC.}
  • {LIST AND ALLERGIES TO MEDICATION, LATEX, ETC. MAKE A NOTE IF YOU HAVE¬† CONTACTS, REMOVABLE DENTURES, IMPLANTS, PACEMAKER, ETC.}

Family History:

Primary Doctor:

Health Insurance:

Emergency Contact 1:

Emergency Contact 2:

Emergency Contact 3:

Medications/Supplements Information

Medications Supplements

Pet Care Information [names, sex (neutered, spayed), age, coloring, microchip (Y/N) and whether or not they are indoor only or indoor/outdoor. Also include your vet’s address and phone number.

It’s also a good idea to be sure that at least one of your emergency contacts has a key to your house as well. Keep a copy of this information in your files at home, too.

Just a word here about having this same information on your cell phone: while convenient, it may work against you:

  • If you are in an accident, your phone may break and be unable to access information
  • Your phone may get lost or stolen
  • Your battery may die

Paper may be old-fashioned, but it’s dependable.

Speaking of stuff in your wallet, did you know how easy it is for someone near you to swipe your credit card information without even touching you or your card? Most *credit cards today have embedded RFID chips, which can be easily read with portable card readers. If someone near you has one of these, they can pick up all your information. All they have to do after that is to download it on a blank card, and boom–they are now you, using your credit card!

Here’s how to stop this from happening, and it’s a cheap fix: cut a square of aluminum foil roughly the size of your credit card. Fold the foil in half, then slip your credit card(s) into it and put it in your wallet. Not to sound like those tinfoil hat wearers who believe that space aliens can’t read their minds through tin foil, but the foil acts as a barrier to keep the card reader from accessing your information. There are many web sites you can check to verify this information, and also where you can buy metal wallets that don’t weigh a ton, and will keep your information safe from walk-by thieves.

If you’re simply looking for a bit of casual protection, simply stacking your cards next to each other will assist in reducing their strength.

But by all means, keep your emergency information current so that you can be prepared, not scared.

*RFID chips now exist in:

  • Chase’s Blink Credit Card
  • Mastercard PayPass Credit Card
  • Many Corporate IDs
  • Many University IDs
  • United States Passports
  • Euro Passports
    AND MUCH MORE