Two eastern Iowa women, both the mothers of children with severe autism, have launched a business that aims to help emergency responders to aid their kids, should they be in a car accident.
Kami Olmstead, of Muscatine, was in a close call with her car a year ago and grew concerned that if something had happened to her in a crash, police and paramedics wouldn’t know her son is autistic and can’t speak.
“The first thing that law enforcement does is, they look at your back license plate,” Olmstead says, “so it was suggested to us that we design a frame or something to put on the back of the vehicle, right where the police would be looking normally.”
Olmstead and her business partner, Karen Holladay, opened K-2 Medical Alerts and created the red-and-black license plate frame with “ASAP” across the top — which stands for Alert for Special Assistance Program — along with matching stickers.
Olmstead says, “We designed a decal to go inside the driver’s side windshield on the bottom corner so from either direction, the law enforcement and EMS would know that inside the glove box is the information that they need on that person.” A detailed card can be filled out, slid into a plastic pocket and stuck to the inside lid of the glove box.
“It’ll have all of the medical information, personal information, emergency contacts and a little added information,” Olmstead says. “For my son, he uses a voice output device to speak so, if I were to be injured and they needed to take him out of the situation, they need to be sure and take that voice output device with them and where it sits in my car.”
Another ASAP sticker can be placed on the front door of your home with another information card just inside. The program is now recognized by all 99 county sheriffs’ departments in Iowa as well as numerous police and fire departments, including those in: Cedar Rapids, Davenport, Muscatine, Wilton, Durant, Buffalo, Tipton and Walcott.
“Every single police department that we’ve spoken to have all told us different stories about different situations where this would have been useful,” Olmstead says. “They’re really pleased with it and excited and very willing to share it with their officers and spread it around.” She hopes the program will continue to gain momentum and eventually can go nationwide, so first responders everywhere will know to look for the ASAP logo — and to look for a child with special needs or an adult with a disability or a medical condition.
The kits with the frame, stickers, pockets and information cards are being sold through the website: www.k2medicalalerts.com