Message in a Bottle… a simple idea to help in an emergency

The West London Clinical Commissioning Group has launched the Message in a Bottle scheme, a simple idea that has been designed to encourage people to keep their personal and medical details on a standard form and in a common location – the fridge.

The scheme is aimed at supporting older people, disabled people and people who have critical conditions/allergies, or who are not in good health, but many others could benefit from using the Message in a Bottle.

Keeping this easy-to-reach record of personal and medical details on a standard form in a common location will prove useful to paramedics, police or fire fighters that might need to access this information in the event of an accident at home, if the emergency services are called.

 

What is Message in a Bottle?

Message in a bottle is a scheme to encourage people to keep their personal and medical details on a standard form within a bottle. This bottle is placed in a common location – the fridge. The bottle contains two stickers; one is to go on the outside of the fridge and the other is to go on the front door or window of the patient’s home. If the individual has an accident at home, and the emergency services are called, the emergency services can then see that the patient is a part of the scheme and get their medical records easily.

 

When did the scheme begin?

The scheme has been running in West London CCG since April 2017, with over 7,000 bottles already distributed to our residents. In January 2019, the Message in a bottle scheme was expanded to an additional 16 GP practices in West London CCG. This means the scheme is now running in all 40 West London GP practices signed up to the My Care My Way programme. The bottles are also shared at Kensington and Chelsea pharmacies.

 

Where are bottles being distributed?

  • GP practices which are signed up to the My Care My Way programme
  • Kensington and Chelsea pharmacies.Which GP practice staff members are promoting the scheme?
  • My Care My Way staff at West London GP practices will work with the GP to identify who could benefit from the scheme.

 

Is there a cost involved?

No, the bottles are free for residents of Kensington and Chelsea, Queens Park and Paddington. NHS West London CCG is responsible for these three areas.

 

For more information email Millie Satow (Project officer at NHS West London CCG) at c.satow@nhs.net