COVID-19 UPDATE 31 Mar 2020

Protection in a Civil Defense National or Local Emergency

We have received requests for clarification with regard to the Foundations Essential Services.

Most members relate to and understand the Foundations Emergency Medical Information Services, but personal medical conditions are only one component of the information the Foundation holds for its Members. The Foundations Medical ID’s are  a device for use of all emergency services. Ie. not just for personal, ambulatory or hospital use. 

In a Civil Emergency your Medical ID takes on a whole new level of importance, as a vital emergency identification device, rather than being used as it commonly is, to identify your medical risks. This protects your health, welfare, safety and rights

By obtaining your MedicAlert ID number and accessing your vital information via either the Foundations Hotline Service or Secure Connected Health IT Services, Emergency Services can locate your emergency contacts, important family members, your regular doctor and other doctors who may be on your record, such as your specialist, should the need arise.

The question is this: Are your Prepared - have you put this additional Emergency Contact information on your MedicAlert record for emergency access?  

If not, you can send us an email with these additional emergency contact details and our staff will update your record - no doctor verification is needed. Please send it by email to, with the Subject line - "Update Emergency Contacts Please". 

Below is the Foundations Policy regarding its Essential Services, this information and other policy related information is available in the General Policies of the Foundation accessible on our Website


10.55   Government Registered Status

MedicAlert® Foundation operates as an Essential Service, including during Civil Emergencies, and is registered with the Government Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment for this purpose.

10.60   Ongoing Essential Services

The Foundation Provides  24/7/365 Secure Connected Health Information Services and a national and international Emergency Hotline Service delivered by the Central Emergency Ambulance Communications (111) Centre, operated by Wellington Free Ambulance, based in Wellington. Emergency Services, including St John, Land SAR, Civil Defense, Health Providers, Fire and Emergency and others, can access vital information for ‘At Risk’ Members of the Society during an emergency or medical situation, including a civil emergency such as a natural disaster or the current COVID-19 emergency.

The Foundations Services enable the Foundation to speak for a person, when they cannot speak for themselves due to experiencing anxiety, stress, confusion, Dementia, Alzheimer’s, or another reason, but generally because they have become Non-Verbal, or cannot be understood.

The Hotline Service enables Emergency Service Providers to quickly obtain vital information necessary to help protect the persons Health, Welfare, Safety or Rights in the situation presented, but also to protect emergency responders from communicable diseases, so they are not harmed.

The Foundations Service Supported and Clinically Validated Medical ID’s provide the Foundations Emergency Hotline Number and your MedicAlert ID number, so your vital information, which cannot be engraved (usually to protect your privacy), can be accessed. This is imperative for service, trust, confidence and consistency.

The Foundation provides secure electronic connected health information services through Health Practice Management Systems where they are connected to the Foundation, to update your information as and when it changes.

Annual Reviews are conducted a minimum of annually to remind people to check and update their vital information on file and/or to obtain confirmation their information remains Current, Correct, Complete, Medically Actionable and Compliant with Health Information Privacy Code 1994, Section 2, Rule 7 (2).

For more information on Clinical Validation, please refer to Policy 20.150: Health Information Clinical Validation Policy , for mitigation of health information errors and personal safety risks.