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Tap2Tag Has Arrived

WHEN Chris Ford's nephew was diagnosed with an allergy which could kill him, he went to extreme measures to make sure paramedics were informed in an emergency.

Joe Wakley had the number of a charity which could give information about the condition – which means he must not be given a certain type of anaesthetic – tattooed on his arm.

But after having the details permanently marked on his wrist, the organisation changed its number.

Joe's problem inspired Chris, of Downend, to come up with a new solution which uses mobile technology to ensure the vital medical information is easily available.

Accountant Chris, 50, designed a wristband containing a chip which can be scanned by the majority of smart phones, linking them straight to an internet site which holds the information.

From this week people will able to buy the wristbands and the site, called Tap2Tag, has gone live.

Father-of-two Chris said it was up to each individual who buys a wristband how much medical information they choose to store online.

Text alerts are sent out every time someone accesses someone's information.

Chris Ford (left) with Chris Skidmore MP at the launch of Tap2Tag on the 2 May 2014 at the Bristol & Bath Science Park, Bristol

The software used in the wristbands is called radio frequency identification.

It is already built into most bank cards and smart phones.

Key fobs and credit card-sized emergency tags for wallets have also been produced by the Kingswood-based firm.

In the future Chris hopes to create cufflinks and other accessories with the tag.

Chris said: "It was a really family affair, me and my wife and two sons sat around a table and came up with ideas.

"I think it could really help people.

"It has taken us about 16 months to develop – I have invested a lot of time and money into it."

To launch his Tag2tag business he attended a special technology show in Birmingham last week.

He said: "I couldn't believe the response, everyone was so positive.

"One carer came up to me and said 'thank you, I've been asking doctors to develop something like this for years'.

"Now we have been there and had such good feedback my confidence has built up in what I'm doing."

South West Ambulance Service's operational manager, Nick Evans, said: "This is a tremendous piece of kit that could enable us to get patient information really quickly.

"We can see huge potential for it within emergency healthcare."

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Article written by Emma Grimshaw.  Pictures by Barbara Evripidou

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