Support for vulnerable in a bottle
Ambitious plans are underway to get a message in a bottle into the home of every elderly or vulnerable person across the Leicestershire Police force area to ensure their emergency medical details can be accessed quickly by emergency responders should they be needed.
Ambitious plans are underway to get a message in a bottle into the home of every elderly or vulnerable person across the Leicestershire Police force area to ensure their emergency medical details can be accessed quickly by emergency responders should they be needed. The Message in a Bottle scheme, run by the Lions Club, is a simple idea to encourage everyone to keep their personal and medical details on a standard form in a common location the fridge. This includes people with serious medical conditions, such as life-threatening allergies, and not just the elderly. The project is being combined with The Herbert Protocol, a national scheme that has been adopted by some police forces in the UK, which encourages family, friends and carers to put together useful information that can then be used if a person with dementia goes missing, such as medication required, mobile numbers and places previously visited. Combining the two projects means vital and useful information is kept on one form in one location making it easy for responders dealing with an emergency. The bottles are kept in the fridge and a sticker is placed on the inside of the front door and on the fridge door. The emergency services will then locate the bottle in the fridge and use the forms inside to quickly access information about that persons routines, medical requirements and favourite places they have visited. This ensures people are treated quickly which can save time and lives. The Lions have provided 6,000 bottles which have been funded by Oadby and Wigston Community Safety Partnership and a local sponsor, and can be picked up free from any police station or front inquiry desk across the force area. Local beat teams will also be distributing them to local care homes. The Community Safety Partnership, which includes Leicestershire Police and the local council, aims to roll out the scheme across the whole of Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland. Inspector Mike Cawley, commander of the South Leicester Neighbourhood Policing Area, said: This is a simple idea to encourage everyone to keep their personal and medical details on a standard form in a common location the fridge. We work very closely with Oadby and Wigston Borough Council and Im really grateful to them and the local Lions Club for their support in getting this scheme rolled out across our area as well as the whole force. This scheme can save lives so I am urging people to pick up a bottle and fill in the form. Funding from the Oadby and Wigston Community Safety Partnership has been match funded by a local business. The Community Safety Partnership chair Kevin Loydall said: I am delighted that we have been able to join forces with the police and Oadby and Wigston Lions, to bring forward such a valuable scheme that has the potential to help many people and even save lives. Richard Darlaston, president of the Oadby and Wigston Lions Club said they were proud to be associated and involved in supporting Leicestershire Police with The Herbert Protocol initiative. We believe by simply completing the Message in a Bottle form providing essential information about a family member, loved one or neighbour who suffers with dementia or Alzheimers will save vital time in the event they go missing from their home, he added. The information provided will enable the authorities to focus their search ensuring loved ones are reunited with their family and friends more quickly causing the minimal amount of stress and disruption to the individual concerned.