Identification Options

A cyclist was knocked over on William Nicol Drive on 2 March 2007. Paramedics were able to identify the cyclist through his ID band he had on his wrist.

ER24 have urged people to get involved in identification. Paramedics often struggle on accident scenes to obtain emergency details. Sometimes this can cause a delay in transportation re-transfer of patients from one hospital to another. SABC News 2 March 2007.


This wristband is made from woven material with an embroided name and telephone number on the face side. A unique number is attached to the back of the wristband.

This number enables a paramedic or medical personnel to get critical lifesaving information about the person during an emergency from the call centre. This is the most effective identification system used by CrisisOnCall since it is always worn on the wrist of the person. The wristband can be used at any time or circumstance.

Each member will receive a plastic membership card.


CrisisOnCall was always under the impression that we discovered identification techniques. However one of our members, Pat Allen, came across this article which dates back to July 1932. Interestingly the article was available in silver and gold. Motivation for the item includes the fact that purse are sometimes stolen or disappear! What would happen in our times to a silver or gold item? One can only just imagine!

This goes to prove that identification is as old as the hills.


CrisisOnCall completed a follow-up study on identification in January 2009. It was shocking to realise just how badly people depended on a medical aid sticker on the windscreen. Please do yourself a favour and go and take a look at your windscreen sticker. Do you see your medical aid number on it? Definitely not! Take into further account that windows frequently break and then a person realises that the sticker means exactly nothing.

Research during January 2009:

39% of the public participating in the research is of the opinion that a medical aid vehicle sticker has enough information. 100% of paramedics participating were of the opinion that a medical aid vehicle sticker is of no use. 78% of the paramedics also indicated that they do not even look at a vehicle sticker.

93% of the participation public carry their medical aid card in their purse/handbag. In only 40% of all accidents paramedics obtain medical aid cards from a purse or handbag. In 44% of the time medical aid cards can for various reasons not be obtained by paramedics.

Paramedics also indicated that in 75% of the time it is very difficult to obtain a medical aid card at a serious accident.

Paramedics also stated that they all have the experience where patients tell them that they have a medical aid card but it cannot be obtained.

In 92% of the time where no medical aid card is available a private hospital will not accept the patient. 8% indicated that they had previous cases where private hospitals stabilized patients and then refer them to a provincial hospital.

The paramedics all agree, the CrisisOnCall arm band is the option for the future.

This research confirms research done in 1999/2000.

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