Illinois Yellow Dot initiative maximizes the golden hour

Got the dot? This medical alert system could save your life.

The hour after a medical emergency is often referred to as the golden hour. Treatment rendered during that time can help determine whether you survive or how the incident will affect your quality of life. During the golden hour, it’s possible that you may be too physically, mentally or emotionally impaired to provide valuable medical information.

The Illinois Department of Transportation has launched a new voluntary initiative called the Yellow Dot program to help those in motor vehicle accidents give first responders a jump-start in giving quality care.

To participate in the Yellow Dot program, you simply fill out a yellow medical card, which must contain your photo, emergency contact information, name of your personal physician, any medical conditions, a list of recent surgeries, any allergies and current medications being taken. After you fill out your card and place it in your glove box, you simply place your yellow dot sticker on your driver’s side rear-facing window. If there are others that share your car and wish to participate, they too can complete a card and keep it in the glove box.

The Illinois Department of Transportation has provided Fermilab with materials for this program. If anyone wishes to obtain a kit with instructions, yellow sticker and card, these materials will be available in the Fermilab Medical Office. Optionally, if you wish to update your medical chart, a staff member can update your chart from the information you provide for your Yellow Dot card. Alternatively, kits are available through the Illinois Yellow Dot program directly. DuPage County residents also may receive kits by calling the DuPage County Health Department at (630) 682-7400.

How you fare after a crash or medical emergency in your vehicle may just come down to whether or not you’ve got the dot.

Brian Svazas, Fermilab doctor