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Frequent Questions

About Medical IDs

What is a medical ID?

A medical ID is jewelry that could save your life. Medical conditions, drug and food allergies, prescribed medicines and emergency contacts can be engraved onto the surface of a medical ID bracelet or necklace.

Who should wear a medical ID?

People with certain medical conditions wear medical IDs to alert emergency medical professionals in an emergency. The following are good reasons to wear a medical ID:

  • Food, Drug or Insect allergies
  • Cardiac problems (angina,arrhythmias,atrial fibrillation,pacemakers)
  • Pulmonary Conditions(Asthma/COPD)
  • Kidney Failure
  • Diabetes, blood disorders
  • Alzheimer's/Memory Impairment
  • Blood thinners/ Anticoagulants (Coumadin/Warfarin)
  • Emphysema/Breathing disorders
  • Rare diseases
  • Epilepsy/Seizure disorder
  • Hearing, sight or mentally impaired
  • Surgery, transplant and cancer patients
  • Clinical trial participants
  • Special needs children
  • Hypertension
  • Stroke risk
  • Sickle Cell Anemia
  • People taking multiple medicines
  • Anemia
  • Tourette Syndrome

Some order medical IDs engraved with their blood type, online health records and contact information.

Do emergency responders even look for a medical ID?

American Medical ID recently surveyed emergency medical professionals ranging from first responders to paramedics. Among the results:

  • More than 95 percent of respondents look for a medical ID during emergencies.
  • More than 75 percent look for a medical ID immediately upon assessing a patient.
  • 95 percent look at the patient's wrist to find a medical ID, and 68 percent look for an ID on the patient's neck.

When should I wear my medical ID?

You should always wear your medical ID. Taking off your medical ID takes away its opportunity to help you in an emergency.

Who recommends a medical ID?

Physicians and healthcare organizations throughout the world recommend medical IDs:

  • Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  • National Institutes of Health
  • Mayo Clinic
  • American Diabetes Association
  • The Cleveland Clinic
  • Columbia University Medical Center
  • The National Association of EMS Educators
  • Epilepsy Foundation
  • The Merck Manual
  • Alzheimer's Association
  • World Health Organization
  • American Heart Association
  • American Academy of Allergy Asthma & Immunology
  • Texas Heart Institute
  • Johns Hopkins Medicine
  • American Heart Association

What are the benefits of wearing a medical ID?

In an emergency, when you might be unable to speak for yourself, a medical ID bracelet or necklace speaks for you.

  • Symptoms of common ailments can easily be misdiagnosed.
  • Prompt diagnosis is critical to effective treatment.
  • A brief description of vital medical facts engraved on your medical ID ensures appropriate and timely medical care.
  • According to a published study, half of all medical errors occur because of mistakes made upon admission or discharge from the hospital.
  • Wearing a medical ID protects against potentially harmful medical errors.

More than 95 percent of emergency responders look for a medical ID; more than 75 percent check for a medical ID immediately upon assessing the patient. If you're wearing a medical ID, it won't be missed.

Medical IDs are not just for emergencies, they eliminate trips to the hospital, reduce unnecessary hospital admissions and prevent minor emergencies from becoming major ones. Medical IDs save lives!

Ordering a Medical ID

How do I order?

Online: Identify the product you wish to purchase, and add it to your shopping cart. You willl then be asked to make engraving selections for your medical ID. Finally, you will need to complete the shipping and payment information. Online purchases can be paid for with any major credit card.

Fax: If you prefer, you may print an order form. Select the order form that features the product you wish to purchase, complete the product selection box, engraving information, shipping instructions and payment information. Payment can be made with a major credit card. Fax your order to us at 713.695.7358.

Mail: Print an order form. Select the order form that features the product you wish to purchase, complete the product selection box, engraving information, shipping instructions and payment information. Payment can be made with a personal check, money order or major credit card. Mail your completed form to:

American Medical ID
P.O. Box 925617
Houston, TX 77292-5617

Telephone: Call our toll-free number, 1.800.363.5985 between the hours of 8am and 5pm CST and place your order with one of our Customer Service Representatives. Phone orders require payment with a major credit card. COD orders are not accepted.

How do I build my medical ID?

Visit our Build Your Medical ID instructional page for details.

How long does it take to get my medical ID?

Your medical ID is gently handled by many of our staff to ensure quality and correct engraving. Typically orders are processed about 2-3 weeks from the time you order to receive your medical ID.

Can I get my ID sooner?

Yes. An additional fee will apply. You may choose from two processing options:

  • Expedite-order processed next business day or
  • Rush-order processed within 3 –5 business days

Transit time will depend on the Ship method you select. See Ship Options below.

What shipping options do you offer?

First Class Mail (shipped via USPS) delivery normally 3-7 business days
Priority Mail (shipped via USPS) normally 2-4 business days
Express Mail (shipped via USPS) 1-2 business days guaranteed
UPS Ground normally 3-5 business days
UPS Next Day 1 business day guaranteed

Does American Medical ID ship outside the United States?

Yes, but there may be additional shipping charges. Call for pricing.

What is the American Medical ID Return Policy?

Because your medical ID is personally engraved and cannot be re-used, we cannot accept returns on personalized items. For returns on non-personalized items, please contact our Customer Service Department at 1-800-363-5985 to obtain a Return Authorization number.

  • Engraved items are non-returnable and non-refundable
  • USB items are non-returnable and non-refundable
  • Non-personalized items must be new and unworn
  • Shipping, handling, and processing fees are non-refundable
  • The customer is responsible for all return shipping expenses
  • All refunds for non-personalized items will be processed within 15 business days via the original method of payment
  • Refunds totaling $20 or under will be issued as store credit unless originating payment method was by credit card or other electronic form of payment (Google / PayPal / etc)
  • For returns or exchanges of non-personalized items, please enclose your merchandise in a padded envelope and ship insured to:

    Attn: Returns, American Medical ID, 949 Wakefield Ste. 100, Houston, TX 77018
    Please include your Return Authorization number on the outside of the package.
    We are not responsible for damages or losses incurred during transit. For your protection, please ship insured.

    What is the American Medical ID Product Warranty?

    All IDs, chains, and attachments are warranted against defects in material or workmanship for 90 days from the date of purchase. Quality of engraving is warranted from one year from date of purchase. Upon receipt, please carefully inspect your purchase for errors or defects. This warranty does not cover:

  • Normal wear such as scratching, dents, or tarnishing of the ID, chain and attachments
  • Damage resulting from misuse, accidental handling, or exposure to corrosive substances
  • Loss of any kind
  • Repairs by anyone other than American Medical ID
  • Changes in engraving information (unless Healthcare Professional Warranty is redeemed.)
  • Oops, I made a mistake, may I change my order?

    To change any order, call our Customer Service Department as soon as possible at 800.363.5985 between the hours of 8am and 5pm CST. Due to personalization of each ID, all sales are final.

    May I order a medical ID for a friend or family member?

    Yes, we encourage you to know everything that should be engraved for your loved one. If you are unsure, purchase an American Medical ID Gift Card instead.

    Why does American Medical ID need to know whether the medical ID is for a male or female?

    We ask if you are male or female to determine your medical ID's plate size and chain length. If you do not specify a chain length in your order, we send the average chain length according to your gender. The plates on our bracelets are different sizes according to your gender. If you would like a different size plate, please call a Customer Service Representative at 1.800.363.5985.

    How do I know what size bracelet to order?

    Measure your wrist and add between 0.5" and 1" to that measurement.

    May I purchase a medical ID without a chain?

    An American Medical ID can be purchased without the chain. Visit our Bracelet or Necklace pages to place your order.

    What is the Customer Satisfaction Policy?

    At American Medical ID we take great pride in creating personalized medical identification jewelry. From the time an order is placed, to when it arrives at your home, we want to ensure you are satisfied with your purchase. If you are not completely satisfied with your merchandise, you may return or exchange it in accordance of our Return Policy.

    How may I check the status of my order?

    To check the status of your order, either contact our Online Assistant or call a Customer Service Representative at 1.800.363.5985 between the hours of 8am and 5pm CST. You may also check the status of your order online here.

    How do I properly care for my medical ID?

    TITANIUM is hypoallergenic. To preserve your medical ID’s appearance and minimize scratching, gently clean with a non-abrasive soap or cleanser and water. Dry completely with a soft cloth. Store your titanium medical ID in a soft cloth or bag. Remove your medical ID when working with metal polishers or scrubbing soap. Heavy Physical activity may make your medical ID vulnerable to scratching. Consider wearing one of our stainless steel bracelets or necklaces while outdoors.
    STAINLESS STEEL Bracelets: Only the Curb chain is adjustable, allowing you to tailor the chain’s length to your wrist. Your medical ID bracelet should be worn firmly, yet comfortably. A firm fit will preserve the engraving. If you chose a Sister Hook clasp, it opens to a “V” by pulling its jaws out and apart. Attach the open clasp to the link to ensure the most comfortable fit on your wrist. To remove excess links, open the unneeded link with pliers by twisting open or cutting away the first unneeded link. Necklaces: If the necklace chain is too short, contact us and we will send a longer chain.
    GOLD AND GOLD-FILLED metals will tarnish when exposed to acidic skin or air. A treated polishing cloth will discourage tarnishing. When storing jewelry, do not mix gold and silver. At a minimum, separate the metals by compartments. Guard your medical ID when using household cleaners, especially those containing ammonia or chlorine. Heavy physical activity may make your medical ID vulnerable to scratching. Consider wearing one of our stainless steel bracelets or necklaces while outdoors.
    STERLING SILVER A treated polishing cloth will discourage tarnishing. When storing jewelry, do not mix gold and silver, separate the metals by compartments. Guard your medical ID when using household cleaners, especially those containing ammonia or chlorine. Heavy physical activity may make your medical ID vulnerable to scratching. Consider wearing a stainless steel medical ID bracelet or necklace while outdoors. Bracelets: Plates are rhodium coated which helps protect your medical ID from scratching. Chains are not rhodium coated. *Please note charm bracelets and the Odyssey Collection pieces are not rhodium coated, therefore may require more frequent cleaning. Necklaces: Are not rhodium coated. This includes the neck charm and chain.

    Can I use my Flex Spending Account to purchase a medical ID?

    Unfortunately, no. Using a credit card linked to your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) will result in a declined order at checkout. However, after purchasing your medical ID with a personal credit card or via Pay Pal, you may be able to submit the receipt to your FSA for reimbursement, depending on your plan.

    Engraving a Medical ID

    What medical conditions should be on a medical ID?

    Below are examples of medical conditions that could warrant wearing a medical ID.

    • Abnormal EKG
    • Adrenal Insufficiency
    • Alcoholism
    • Alzheimer's
    • Angina
    • Asthma
    • Bleeding Disorder
    • Cardiac Arrhythmia
    • Cataracts
    • Clotting Disorder
    • Dementia
    • Diabetes (Insulin Dependent)
    • Diabetes (Non-Insulin Dependent)
    • Emphysema
    • Glaucoma
    • Hearing Impaired
    • Heart Valve Prosthesis
    • Hemolytic Anemia
    • Hypertension
    • Laryngectomy
    • Leukemia
    • Lupus
    • Lymphomas
    • Malignant Hyperthermia
    • Mental Retardation
    • Myasthenia Gravis
    • Pacemaker
    • Renal Failure
    • Sickle Cell Anemia
    • Seizure Disorder
    • Situs Inversus
    • Stroke
    • Vision Impaired

    Should medicines be listed on my medical ID?

    As a rule and if space permits, it's wise to list prescription medicines that are being taken on a long-term or "maintenance" basis. This will give medical personnel better guidance on how to initiate treatment and will lessen the chance of a drug interaction.

    Some classes of medicines that would be appropriate for an ID are:

    • Analgesics: Includes many narcotics, such as morphine and codeine
    • Antianginals: Medicines that alleviate episodes of angina
    • Antiarrhythmics: Heart drugs that can correct or prevent irregular heart beats
    • Anticoagulants: Blood thinners
    • Anticonvulsants: Meds for seizure disorder and epilepsy
    • Antihistamines, Decongestants: Prescription or over-the-counter meds for allergic rhinitis
    • Antihypertensives: Blood pressure medicine
    • Beta Blockers: Drugs that can slow the heart rate: Inderal, Tenormin, etc.
    • Chemotherapy Agents: Drugs for treating cancer or serious infectious diseases
    • Steroids: Cortisone, Decadron, etc.

    Should I list allergies on my medical ID?

    Yes. Allergic reactions to drugs, foods and insects can cause serious medical problems. A medical ID informs medical personnel of an allergy, allowing for rapid response to end the reaction.

    Allergens are numerous, some common examples:

    • Anticonvulsants: Tegretol, Dilantin
    • Aspirin: Anacin, Excedrin, Ibuprofen, Naproxyn
    • Barbiturates: Phenobarbital
    • Antibiotics: Penicillin, Sulfa, Cephalosporins, Mycins
    • Narcotics: Codeine, Morphine, Demerol
    • Others: Dairy Products, Horse Serum, Insect Stings, Latex, Lidocaine, Novocaine, Nuts, X-Ray Dye

    What other information can be placed on my medical ID?

    Anything can be engraved on an ID, within space limits. Some examples of what might be wise to engrave:

    • Advance Directives (DNR, etc.)
    • Blood Type
    • Contact Lenses
    • Difficult Intubation
    • Emergency Contacts (Next of Kin, Physician, etc.)
    • Faith
    • Implants
    • Living Will
    • Organ Donor
    • Pacemaker
    • Stent
    • See Wallet Card

    I'm not sure how my medical ID should be engraved, what do I do?

    • List only those medical conditions that would be important in an emergency. For example, a minor surgery that took place several years ago may no longer be relevant to your current medical care.
    • Space is limited, so summarize your information with short, descriptive words. Any information that cannot go on your medical ID bracelet or necklace can be written on a wallet or purse ID card.
    • List only medicines you wish to be engraved. Generally, this would be prescription medicine, taken on a long-term daily basis. You may wish to list the most important medicines first.

    If you need help deciding what to engrave, ask your physician or pharmacist, or you may call Customer Service, 1.800.363.5985.

    If you're unsure about what to engrave, ask your doctor. If you need assistance phrasing a medical condition so that it will fit on your medical ID or so Emergency Medical Professionals recognize it, please call our Customer Service Representatives at 1.800.363.5985 and we'll assist you.

    Is it necessary to put my name on my medical ID?

    Engraving your name on your medical ID is personal preference. However, at least a first name is recommended. A first name is especially important in an emergency, as emergency personnel will say a person's name in an effort to get their attention if they are in a daze, a diabetic coma or unconscious for example.

    We recommend that all Alzheimer's patients engrave their name and address or contact information of a friend or family member.

    Other Questions

    Once engraved can I add info to my medical ID?

    We advise only engraving information that is unlikely to change. Information on your medical ID, once engraved, cannot be removed or changed.

    How do I adjust the size of my stainless steel bracelet?

    All of our stainless steel medical ID bracelets have adjustable sizing. It is simple and easy to do. Just watch this short video for instructions!

    How do I properly insert my e•MedTAG USB Dog Tag or USB Dog Tag ID into my computer?

    Press in on the black lever on the side of the USB and it slide forward. While still holding the lever, insert the USB into your computer’s USB port. Once the USB device is full inserted into your computer you are ready to begin.

    Can I tell American Medical ID how my medical ID impacted my life?

    Yes. We would be delighted to hear how your medical ID has influenced your life. Please share your Life Story.

    What is My Interactive Health Record (MyIHR)?

    You can think of My Interactive Health Record as an extension of an engraved medical ID or a wallet card. For example, in an emergency, your medical alert jewelry piece provides caregivers with a brief description of a few key facts.

    A medical ID enabled with MyIHR could significantly help emergency medical services provide you with the correct care for your conditions and ultimately save your life.

    In the event of an accident, or debilitating medical episode, if you cannot speak for yourself, your MyIHR enabled medical ID will. MyIHR allows you to create an Interactive Health Record that will provide emergency personnel with your Name, Address, Emergency Contacts, Health Insurance, Conditions, Medications, Allergies, and more. In order to provide you with the best possible care, your Interactive Health Record is available to Emergency Personnel 24 hours a day, 365 days a year via the website AND telephone.

    A physician, medic or nurse may then locate your file online at www.MyIHR.com or by calling the toll-free 800 number where a medically trained operator provides live assistance. Armed with this additional knowledge they will be in a much better position to provide timely and appropriate care for you - possibly life-saving medical care!

    American Medical ID will never disclose or sell a customer's personal information. View the MyIHR Privacy Policy.

    There is more information about the My Interactive Health Record here.

    Why does it take so long to make a medical ID?

    Our medical IDs are custom-engraved and custom-sized to reflect our customers exact requests. Considering we strive for accuracy and quality, once an order has been received and the medical ID has been engraved, the order is examined multiple times ensuring complete accuracy. The jewelry is then polished and packaged with care before it is sent to the customer.

    Should I tell my doctor that I purchased a medical ID?

    We encourage our customers to inform their doctor that they have purchased a medical ID. Just as they would tell their doctor about new medicines or changes in their health, so should they tell their doctor about their medical ID.

    When you receive your American Medical ID bracelet or necklace, you'll find a Healthcare Provider Approval Card. On your next visit, show your doctor your medical ID and give him the Healthcare Provider Approval Card. If your doctor approves your ID’s engraving, we'll add a one-year engraving warranty to your account.

    If, however, your doctor thinks you should have engraved additional information, we’ll be happy to add that important information for a small fee. Then you’ll have another opportunity to get your doctor’s approval and engraving warranty.

    The customer is responsible for returning the medical ID.

    How can I get order forms?

    Click here for medical ID order forms and support materials.

    Gift Cards

    How do I redeem my Gift Card?

    There are 3 easy ways!

    • Build your medical ID online and proceed to the Billing/Shipping page. On the Billing/Shipping page, enter the Gift Card number and PIN number. The Gift Card number is located on the back of the card, the PIN number is located on the card's carrier. Click "Continue Checkout" and proceed with purchase.
    • Complete a paper order form and mail it to the address below.
    • Call us at 800.363.5985 during regular business hours and place your order with one of our Customer Service representatives.

    American Medical ID
    P.O. Box 925617
    Houston, TX 77292

    How will my Gift Card be shipped?

    Our Gift Cards are presented in a customized carrier with an order form. Standard delivery is free of charge and the order should arrive within 3-7 days via the U.S. Postal Service.

    May I use my Gift Card and a credit card to purchase items?

    Gift Cards may be used in combination with a credit card to complete your transaction.

    What do I do if I lose my Gift Card?

    Lost or stolen Gift Cards will not be replaced unless presented with the original receipt. If your Gift Card becomes lost or stolen, please call 800.363.5985 to report the loss. Once your information has been verified we will mail a replacement Gift Card to you for the remaining balance.

    Do American Medical ID Gift Cards expire?

    There is no expiration date for the Gift Cards. Any unused balance remains on your Gift Card until it is spent.

    Can I still use my paper Gift Certificate as a form of payment?

    Yes. You can use an American Medical Identifications paper gift certificate in 2 easy ways!

    • Complete the order form on the back of the certificate and mailing it to the address below.
    • Call us at 800.363.5985 during regular business hours and place your order with one of our customer service representatives.

    Paper certificates cannot be used for payment online. If you place a mail or phone order you must send in your paper Gift Certificate to the address listed below. Please reference the certificate number if a phone order is placed. Your order will be processed upon receipt of the Gift Certificate/Merchandise Credit.

    American Medical ID
    P.O. Box 925617
    Houston, TX 77292


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