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Government > Departments > Public Safety > Leon County Emergency Medical Services > Services > Vial of LIFE Program
Government > Departments > Public Safety > Leon County Emergency Medical Services > Services > Vial of LIFE Program


Leon County Emergency Medical Services (LCEMS) has implemented the Vial of LIFE program to provide prompt and efficient emergency medical treatment to the residents of Leon County during times of personal medical emergencies.

What is the Vial of Life Program?

The Vial of LIFE program is a nationally recognized program that assists emergency medical workers when responding to and treating individuals during home medical emergencies. The Vial of LIFE form contains much of the medical history of an individual needed by the responding emergency medical personnel, such as existing medical conditions, allergies, medication currently being taken, and emergency contact information. This important medical and patient information is placed on a standardized form and placed in a baggie, which is stored on your refrigerator.

How Does the Program Work?

When you have a medical emergency in your home, police, fire, and emergency medical services personnel will look on your refrigerator door for a Vial of LIFE magnet and baggie. Upon seeing this magnet on your refrigerator door, the members will retrieve the completed information from the baggie. You should keep additional copies to replace the ones taken. This information will assist responding emergency medical personnel with previous medical history, medications, and other related information that may be used in the treatment of you or your family member. The kit consists of an information form, baggie, and magnet.

How Do I Participate?

  1. Complete a Vial of LIFE form. Be sure to include the date that you completed the form, which will help emergency personnel know how recent is the medical information. It may be beneficial to attach a recent photograph of yourself to the form as a means for positive identification. For additional information, please see Vial of LIFE form instructions.
  2. After completing the form, fold them and place them in the baggie.
  3. If you don't know the answer to a question on the form, contact your doctor or pharmacist for the correct information or leave the section blank.
  4. Attach the Vial of LIFE magnet and baggie to the top portion of your refrigerator door to alert emergency personnel to the presence of Vial of LIFE information.

Who Will Have Access to This Information?

If you or a family member requires emergency medical treatment, possible lifesaving information will be available to responding personnel. This includes EMS personnel, fire department personnel, and law enforcement. The information will then be supplied to the medical staff and doctors at the treating hospital. At no time will this information be available to anyone other than personnel involved in the treatment of the patient.

Why Should I Participate?

As emergency medical personnel respond to each emergency, important information must be gathered in order to properly treat the patient. If this information is available immediately upon arrival on the scene, minutes can be saved while treating the patient. When seconds can mean the difference between life and death, the advantages of participation are obvious. Sometimes a patient may be unconscious or unable to talk with emergency medical personnel. In a case such as this, emergency medical personnel can look at the information provided on the form and help determine the possible treatment of the patient.

Where Will This Information Be Stored?

The form will be placed in a baggie which will then be placed on your refrigerator door. This location was chosen because it is centrally located and common to all households. The form is returned to you after emergency personnel have obtained the needed information.

How Will the Responding Personnel Know You Are Participating?

A magnet placed on the exterior of your refrigerator door will notify emergency personnel of your participation.

Why Should I Include a Photo with my Vial of LIFE Form?

It is beneficial to include a recent photo with your Vial of LIFE form to distinguish family members or individuals who reside at the same residence. Even if you live alone, it is important to include a recent photo with your form just in case you happen to have guests staying in your home. By including a recent photo, you can be sure that there is no confusion for emergency personnel.

What Happens When I Am Away From Home?

If you would like to carry a second copy with you while traveling, make a photocopy and place it in your wallet or purse. It is important not to take the original form and baggie from home with you.

How Often Should I Update the Information?

It is important to maintain current information. If there is a medication change or any other problems that should be noted, make changes on the form or get a new form. People's medications change from time to time. If that happens, draw a line through those medications you are no longer taking, and write down any new ones prescribed to you.

Who Should Fill Out or Update the Information?

You can fill it out or update it, but if you need assistance, you can have your physician, nurse, or medical personnel assist you or you may contact Leon County Emergency Medical Services headquarters. Someone at your church in the medical profession may also assist you. Review your Vial of LIFE information and update it after a doctor's appointment or when information changes.

For more information on the Vial of Life program or to set up an informational session on the program for your community group, business, or organization, please call 850-606-2100.

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