Blood type encoding on vCard

From what I know, at least in germany, this does not do anything at all. I was at several first-aid-courses from the red cross (needed to do them for work), and they always said that they will try to revive the person no matter what he has tattooed on his body. And that they actually have to. Still, I think ethically, that’s a difficult one - a person’s wish should be respected whenever possible. Even if that wish is to die, ultimately.

Honestly, I’d really remove or rather cover up that tattoo if I’d change my mind on that topic :smiley:

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Or, if you’re really cheap, strike it and have “EDIT: nevermind actually” tattooed next to it.

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Some great info and perspective!
Everything we do is noted on the PRF; time of call, time of departure, time arrived on scene etc. From what I recall, I noted our time arrived on scene then started assessment. Pulse and breathing are always a priority so this was naturally checked first. No breathing but pulse (my short note “HR pres na resp”) and the time of observation on my glove. Immediate ambulance response was called on the radio given the situation.
While I carried out the assessment, my partner was readying our equipment following my assessment (ie AED, airway adjuncts, BVM etc). I usually think out loud so my partner knows what Im doing and what my findings are. We knew CPR would have to be started immediately, so grabbed some scissors and cut the shirt so we could start compressions and get the AED pads on.
Shirt opened to reveal the tattoo, note taken on my glove, moment of pause to think how to proceed. It was quickly agreed that we didnt have the formal documentation to verify this and that a paramedic ambulance is on the way to start CPR.
This was a tough decision and something I’m still not 100% sure if I acted correctly on at the time. Shortly after CPR started, ambulance arrived and mostly took over. I mentioned the DNR tattoo but was told to continue until that information could be verified on their system. We managed to get the patient into the ambulance where my partner and I were told to standby outside. Shortly after, we were told their callsign (for our PRF) and that the patient was going to hospital. We were thanked for our efforts.


You could check out the impli app. Haven’t done much research on the company yet, so not sure about providing my info, but if you find they are legit let me know. The company is based in london and the app lets you link all your medical data and even things like scans. I downloaded the app and registered to check it out it must just read the uid or someting cause it let me register my NeXT. The site says they are trying to work with medical services to educate about chips and how to check for one. Depnding on security it might be worth looking into.

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I’m sure it was the paramedic’s wish that the person be saved to make that decision while stable and conscious. Whose wish is more valid? I would say while you’re unconscious from an injury/infirmity your preference is invalidated in favor of the conscious people trying to help you. If you really wanted to die, do that on your own time. If you think it was God’s will then don’t worry, he’ll definitely catch up to you.


If I was a paramedic, I’d disregard a DNR tattoo immediately for two reasons:

1/ What’s on someone’s skin is just that - something on someone’s skin. The true intention of the person is in their brain. If they’re unconscious, it’s not accessible. Therefore logically, better safe than sorry: they can always confirm the tattoo after they’re revived, but they can hardly do so when they’re dead.

2/ I’d rather be sued for ignoring someone’s wish than for manslaughter.

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From my experience, these are just indicators to start asking the right questions; not a reliable source of medical information that should be acted on alone.

I know in the UK, a DNR has a background procedure before a doctor signs off the request and records it on the patients record. Usually the family have a paper copy of the formal request along with what a medical professional should do in that situation.

So if a medical professional sees a tattoo/bracelet/necklace etc, they must verify its legitimacy before acting upon it. They cannot take it at face value without seeking verification before altering treatment.

I remember being told that as a first responder (believe its the same for paramedics/doctors/healthcare professionals) that the aim is to “do no harm” first. So, when faced with a tough decision, I ask myself “What would do more harm to the patient?” and choose the other option.

Don’t get me wrong - I’m okay with the practice here. Simply because I think it’s very hard to make a decision on that point (for the paramedic), so they shouldn’t have to make one - just follow the obvious rule, save the person, everything’s fine.

But this one is a bit strange for me - it’s not the paramedics “wish”, it’s his job. A job I appreciate and all, don’t get me wrong, but I don’t think that can be compared to “wishing” to live or not. I do not know why people get such tattoos, if it’s for religious reasons (what would make it a bit more stupid for me) or others, but I do not think it’s a suicidal decision - I don’t think these people actively want to die, I think they just don’t want to prevent it if it ever happens. And maybe there should be a way to allow that, thinking body autonomy again…

You should be careful with your glow-in-the-dark implant: when the paramedic sees it, they might just try to reset you by long-pressing on it :slight_smile:

Hehe, my husband always jokes that he finally found the on-button on a woman… sigh.
But that would actually be a cool idea, if I could power something with it… or make it do something if pressed…

Just be glad he said on button and not off button haha!

Yeah but to also carry a card in the wallet (check the OP)… that clinches it really… would you change your mind about such a thing and not get rid of the card in your wallet? Still, the family could attempt to sue for any reason… it would probably be tossed out in this case but honestly, DNR would not even be a thing if assisted suicide were legal… people often get DNR orders because they fear what might be their quality of life after an “event”… but if AS was allowed then they could decide for themselves after any such event and not need to gamble on it with a dnr.


To be honest, I’m pretty sure he’d sometimes like to have an off-button for me as well… :smile:

That’s a fairly good reason, I think…
But that would also apply to cases where no permanent damage occurs… or to cases where people live a happy life in spite of being disabled or whatever… pretty difficult topic. Still, I think anyone who doesn’t want to live the way he/she/it lives should be given the possibility to end that life.

In Switzerland assisted suicide is legal and it is carried out by an organisation called “Exit”. But oh boy, is it hard to get registered there!
Picture this: You’re 65 years old and start to develop health problems which don’t look good. You won’t just die from it, you will suffer for a long time. So you think you can get registered with “Exit”. Hah! Fat chance! You should have done that 20-30 years ago and I’m not even joking.
Basically once you turn 30, are still totally healthy, might me thinking about having kids and all, then you should be thinking about registering with the assisted suicide organisation. Kinda strange concept.
I get what you meant, just telling you how it works in one of the few countries where this is actually legal.

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The General election in New Zealand this year, will be the option to vote in End of Life Choice Act 2019
Parliament passed the End of Life Choice Act, but it has not come into force. The Act will only come into force if more than 50% of voters in the referendum vote ‘Yes’.

The Act gives people with a terminal illness the option of requesting assisted dying.

Terms used in the Act

In the Act, ‘assisted dying’ means:

  • a person’s doctor or nurse practitioner giving them medication to relieve their suffering by bringing on death; or
  • the taking of medication by the person to relieve their suffering by bringing on death.

In the Act, ‘medication’ means a lethal dose of the medication used for assisted dying.

Who would be eligible for assisted dying?

To be able to ask for assisted dying, a person must meet ALL the following criteria. They must:

  • be aged 18 years or over
  • be a citizen or permanent resident of New Zealand
  • suffer from a terminal illness that’s likely to end their life within 6 months
  • have significant and ongoing decline in physical capability
  • experience unbearable suffering that cannot be eased
  • be able to make an informed decision about assisted dying.

A person would not be eligible to ask for assisted dying if the only reason they give is that they are suffering from a mental disorder or mental illness, or have a disability of any kind, or are of advanced age.

More Info ... if you are interested

Who would be considered able to make an informed decision about assisted dying?

Under the Act, a person is able to make an informed decision about assisted dying if they can do ALL of the following things:

  • understand information about assisted dying
  • remember information about assisted dying in order to make the decision
  • use or weigh up information about assisted dying when making their decision
  • communicate their decision in some way.

Making sure the choice is freely made

The doctor must do their best to make sure that a person’s choice to ask for assisted dying is their own.

If, at any time, the doctor or nurse practitioner thinks a person is being pressured about their decision, they must stop the process.

A health practitioner is not allowed to suggest that a person consider assisted dying when providing a health service to them.

The assisted dying process

Requesting assisted dying

The process of assisted dying begins with the person asking their doctor.

Determining who is eligible

The person’s doctor and an independent doctor must agree that the person meets all the criteria, which includes being able to make an informed decision about assisted dying.

If either doctor is unsure of the person’s ability to make that decision, a psychiatrist needs to assess the person. If a person is not eligible, they cannot receive assisted dying.

Selecting the method and timing

If the person is eligible, they choose a method, date, and time for taking the medication.

Administering the lethal dose of medication

At the time the person has chosen to take the medication, the doctor or nurse practitioner must ask the person if they still choose to take the medication.

If the person chooses to take it, the doctor or nurse practitioner gives it. The doctor or nurse practitioner must be available to the person until they die.

If the person changes their mind, the medication must be taken away.

What happens after the votes are counted?

If more than 50% of people vote ‘Yes’ in the referendum, the End of Life Choice Act will come into force 12 months after the date the final votes are announced.

If more than 50% of people vote ‘No’ in the referendum, the End of Life Choice Act will not come into force.

It’s a sort of an assisted suicide though isn’t it? That’s why I said I didn’t want to be sued for manslaughter.

That’s strange because Dignitas seems to carry out “convenience” suicide in Switzerland legally and fairly easily - such as this UK woman. Why would anyone bother to sign up with Exit then?

Speaking of suffering and assisted suicide, here’s a funny story:

Back when I lived in Belgium (where assisted suicide is also legal), the workmate with whom I shared an office, who had a particularly dark sense a humor, had to take a leave of absence for a few days, because his dad was scheduled to end his life.

His dad had had advanced lung cancer for 4 years, and had had enough of feeling like he was drowning all the time. So they arranged for the family doctor to come home and terminate his life - which is how it’s done there.

When my workmate came back to work the next morning, he didn’t look particularly sad. So I (carefully) asked him why. He explained that it had been a relief, both for his dad and for the family. They had prepared for his dad’s passing for a long time, so the grieving had long been dealt with, and the ensuing family reunion turned out to be a quite a joyful affair.

Then a rather stuffy colleague arrived, popped into the office, looked at him gravely and said in a suitably melodramatic voice: “Oh, you’re back. Look, I’m REAAAALLY sorry about your dad. So sad for him!”

His priceless answer: “Why? Did you kill him?”

You should have seen the guy’s face! I was drinking my coffee at that moment, and had to change my keyboard :slight_smile:

The ol’ classic joke lead in :wink:


Well, you can’t fault me for not trying to find an amusing side to everything :slight_smile:

Just to throw a little (more) offtopic in here - I just love how really many threads in this forum turn into a pretty derailed philosophical conversation about very interesting topics. Guess that’s not possible in many forums, and that’s one of the reasons I really like it here :wink:


Hi all, although a nice idea I can confirm that in the UK at least and most likely elsewhere we would pay zero attention to a blood group / allergy status on an implant, tattoo, QR code, etc. In addition I doubt the first responder or resus teams would find it or know what it was.

In an emergency we would draw blood when cannulating and give O- until the patient has been cross matched (takes about 15 mins).

So yes all those tacticool patches with blood groups on are a waste of money. We would also ignore a tattoo with DNR / DNAR / DNACPR on it.


Yeah I’m O- and a blood/platelet doner. I spoke to a doctor and pretty much reflected exactly that you will get O- till proven otherwise (your welcome :wink: )