A medical alert designation may be applied to a senior’s driver’s license to indicate a medical condition that may need immediate attention during an emergency. When medical emergencies occur, having the correct medical information available can save lives. In most states, a special area is designated on the front or back of a driver’s license and identification card.
The medical condition may be listed on the driver’s license, or the license may indicate to emergency responders that the senior is carrying a separate emergency medical card.
Seniors must request the medical alert identifier be placed on their driver’s license at the time of their photograph. Licensing agencies will then provide a space where medical conditions can be listed. The senior must also present a signed physician's statement indicating the medical conditions so that records may be electronically filed.
Although many states offer the option of medical alert designation, not all states participate in this practice. Other states may list similar information on a senior’s driver license through restrictions and code designations so that medical conditions are not visible for all to see at first glance.
In most states, a medical alert designation can be added to driver licenses at no cost.In select states, a fee up to $5 may be required. When a senior renews their driver's license, they will be required to resubmit medical documentation. If the medical condition no longer exists, the senior must submit documentation completed by a physician indicating that the condition no longer exists.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that nearly 120 million people require emergency medical assistance on the highways each year in the United States. Oftentimes, a senior’s medical condition may affect their ability to drive, resulting in near and actual accidents. In some states, seniors can choose to add a medical alert designation to their driver’s license.
In the event of an emergency in which a senior maybe either unconscious or unable to communicate with medical personnel, a medical alert designation on a driver’s license can advise bystanders and emergency personnel of all diagnosed medical conditions. When medical personnel are informed and aware of medical conditions the senior may have, efficient care can be provided in a timely manner.