Title:
Medical information jewelry
Kind Code:
A1


Abstract:
An exemplary embodiment includes a solid state memory chip contained in or attached to various items of jewelry to be worn on the body of the user. The chip contains extensive medical information about the user, as well as contact and address information, and medical insurance information. The information on the microchip would be accessed by its contacts or by a small USB plug on the jewelry and connected to the memory chip inside. The jewelry would also contain on its surface a medical alert symbol. If the wearer of the jewelry is injured or has a medical emergency, the emergency medical technicians would recognize the medical alert symbol and would see the computer cable plug or open the chip container, and would plug in a computer or other device which could quickly read the medical information stored on the microchip.



Inventors:
Talbott, Gayle Finer (Centennial, CO, US)
Talbott, William John (Centennial, CO, US)
Application Number:
11/455484
Publication Date:
01/24/2008
Filing Date:
06/19/2006
Primary Class:
International Classes:
A44C5/00
View Patent Images:



Primary Examiner:
ISLAM, SYED A
Attorney, Agent or Firm:
Henry L. Smith, Jr. (Highlands Ranch, CO, US)
Claims:
We claim:

1. A device for storing medical or other personal information about a user comprising: (a) a flash solid-state memory chip containing medical or other personal information of the user, (b) an openable and closable chip envelope comprised of metal, strong plastic, or other durable material and adapted to contain the chip, (c) an item of jewelry means attached to, or comprising, the chip envelope, and adapted to be worn on or about the body of the user, and (d) a caduceus or other widely recognized medical alert symbol on the chip envelope and having a position and size designed to attract the attention of a medical services provider, whereby, in an emergency or other situation, a medical services provider is likely to recognize the medical alert symbol and open chip envelope and remove the chip and connect it to a personal computer or its equivalent readout means for information readout, or the user may connect it to a personal computer or equivalent readout means for information readout.

2. A device for storing medical or other personal information about a user comprising: (a) a flash solid-state memory chip containing medical or other personal information of the user, (b) an openable and closable chip envelope comprised of metal, strong plastic, or other durable material and adapted to contain the chip, (c) an item of jewelry attached to, or comprising, the chip envelope, and adapted to be worn on or about the body of the user, and (d) a caduceus or other widely recognized medical alert symbol on the chip envelope and having a position and size designed to attract the attention of a medical services provider, whereby, in an emergency or other situation, a medical services provider is likely to recognize the medical alert symbol and open the chip envelope and remove the chip and connect it to a personal computer or its equivalent readout means for information readout, or the user may connect it to a personal computer or equivalent readout means for information readout, and wherein the item of jewelry is an item selected from the group consisting of: a slider with slider tabs for engaging a necklace, bracelet or similar elongate jewelry item; a pendant with a pendant loop for attachment to a chain, bracelet or necklace; a dog tag; a watch or watchband; a charm; a rigid bracelet; a chain bracelet with hinged clasp containing the chip; a mesh bracelet with hinged section containing the chip; a stretchy mesh bracelet; a hospital wrist or ankle band; a ring; a shell bracelet; a pin; a one-piece chain; ankle bracelets; hair accessories; eyeglasses; earrings; belt buckles; belly button rings; eyeglasses straps; strings or bead holders, or other jewelry means.

3. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a shell bracelet comprised of two meshing or mating shells secured by one or more retaining pins, and wherein the closed shells contain the chip which is provided with a USB port.

4. The device of claim 2, wherein the item of jewelry is a shell bracelet comprised of two meshing or mating shells secured by one or more retaining pins, and wherein the closed shells contain the chip which is provided with a USB port.

5. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a slider with slider tabs for engaging a necklace, bracelet, or similar elongate jewelry item.

6. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a pendant with a pendant loop for attachment to a chain, bracelet, or necklace.

7. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a dog tag.

8. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a watch or watchband.

9. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a charm.

10. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a rigid bracelet.

11. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a chain bracelet with hinged clasp containing the chip.

12. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a mesh bracelet with hinged section containing the chip.

13. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a stretchy mesh bracelet.

14. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a hospital wrist or ankle band.

15. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a ring.

16. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a shell bracelet.

17. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a pin.

18. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a one-piece chain.

19. The device of claim 14, further comprising a slot for an identification slip about the user.

20. A method for storing, or displaying, medical or other personal information of a user in an object adapted to be worn on or about the body of the user, comprising the steps of: (a) storing such information on a flash solid-state memory chip using a personal computer or similar device, (b) inserting the chip into the chip envelope of claim 1, (c) removing the chip from the chip envelope, and (d) connecting the chip to a personal computer or its equivalent readout means for displaying the information.

21. The device of claim 1, wherein the memory chip has crucial medical information listed first or highlighted by type size, color or other similar attention-getting information display means.

22. The method of claim 20, further comprising, in step (a), listing crucial medical information first in the display, or highlighting the crucial medical information by type size, color or similar attention-getting information display means.

23. The device of claim 1, further comprising a miniature radio transmitter connected to the chip for transmitting the information on the chip to an information display device.

24. The device of claim 2, further comprising a miniature radio transmitter connected to the chip for transmitting the information on the chip to an information display device.

25. The method of claim 20, wherein the step of connecting the chip to the personal computer or its equivalent is done by transmitting the information by a miniature radio transmitter connected to the chip.

26. The device of claim 1, wherein the chip contains graphical displays of medical information comprising one or more items selected from the group consisting of: X-rays, finger prints, MRI images, CAT scans, EKG's, EEG's, mammograms, sonograms, or similar graphical medical information displays.

27. The device of claim 2, wherein the chip contains graphical displays of medical information comprising one or more items selected from the group consisting of: X-rays, finger prints, MRI images, CAT scans, EKG's, EEG's, mammograms, sonograms, or similar graphical medical information displays.

28. The method of claim 20, further comprising the step of transmitting the information on the chip by radio, cell phone, email, fax or similar electronic transmission method to other medical service providers.

29. The method of claim 20, wherein the readout means equivalent to a personal computer is a PalmPilot™ or BlackBerry™ or similar hand-sized electronic device.

30. A device for storing medical or other personal information about a user comprising: (a) a flash solid-state memory chip containing medical or other personal information of the user, (b) an openable and closable chip envelope comprising a shell bracelet comprised of metal, strong plastic, or other durable material and adapted to contain the chip, and (c) a caduceus or other widely recognized medical alert symbol on the chip envelope and having a position and size designed to attract the attention of a medical services provider, whereby, in an emergency or other situation, a medical services provider is likely to recognize the medical alert symbol and open chip envelope and remove the chip and connect it to a personal computer or equivalent readout means for information readout, or the user may connect it to a personal computer or equivalent readout means for information readout.

31. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is an ankle bracelet.

32. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a hair accessory.

33. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is eyeglasses.

34. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is an earring.

35. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry a belt buckle.

36. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a belly button ring.

37. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is an eyeglasses strap.

38. The device of claim 1, wherein the item of jewelry is a string or bead holder.

Description:

BACKGROUND

One very useful embodiment of the Invention relates to the following field, although the Invention may also relate to other fields. The Invention may have various embodiments. The field includes apparatus and methods for storing medical and related information about a person on a small, portable electronic device which can be carried in various ways, including in or attached to jewelry, by a person so that in an emergency the information can be read from the device quickly.

DESCRIPTION OF RELATED ART

Typical of the art related to the more widely useful embodiments of the present Invention are the following patents. The following examples of related art and its limitations are illustrative and not exclusive. Other limitations of the related art will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon study of the specification and drawings of this application. Other embodiments of the Invention may relate to other arts.

U.S. Pat. No. 6,845,063, Jan. 18, 2005 to Mitchell discloses an emergency voice bracelet for disclosing emergency medical information. U.S. Pat. No. 5,877,742, Mar. 2, 1999 to Klink discloses a medical information bracelet with an LCD screen for displaying medical information in a scrolling manner.

SUMMARY

One of the more widely useful embodiments of the present Invention may be summarized as follows. This embodiment is exemplary only. Other embodiments will become apparent to those skilled in the art upon study of the specification and drawings of this application. Other embodiments of the Invention may relate to other arts and have usefulness in those arts. An exemplary embodiment includes a solid state memory chip contained in or attached to various items of jewelry means to be worn on the body of the owner. A multitude of jewelry means could be used including, but not limited to, bracelets, necklaces, “dog tags”, a slider with slider tabs for engaging a necklace, bracelet or similar elongate jewelry item; a pendant with a pendant loop for attachment to a chain, bracelet or necklace; a watch or watchband; a charm; a rigid bracelet; a chain bracelet with hinged clasp containing the chip; a mesh bracelet with hinged section containing the chip; a stretchy mesh bracelet; a hospital wrist or ankle band; a ring; a shell bracelet; a pin; a one-piece chain. The chip contains extensive medical information about the owner, as well as contact and address information, and medical insurance information. The information on the microchip would be accessed by a small USB or similar computer cable plug on the jewelry and connected to the memory chip inside, or via a small radio transmitter and external scanner, or by removing the chip from its container and inserting it into an adapter with matching electrical contacts. The jewelry would also contain on its surface a medical alert symbol such as the caduceus, the universally recognized symbol of physicians. If the wearer of the jewelry is injured or has and medical emergency, the emergency medical technicians (“EMT's”) or other medical service providers would recognize the medical alert symbol and would see the computer cable plug, and would plug in a computer or other device which could quickly read the medical information stored on the microchip. The Invention includes material components and the process for using them.

PURPOSES AND ADVANTAGES

The purposes and advantages of the more widely useful embodiments of the present invention include, but are not limited to, the following, and may include other purposes and advantages in different fields of use not listed herein:

1. To enable detailed medical information to be stored on a very small device on the person of the user.

2. To enable medical personnel to recognize the device and quickly read out medical information on the user, who may be unconscious.

3. To enable quick and very accurate transfer of the user's medical information to EMT's on the scene of an emergency, and to more distant doctors and hospitals by email or wired or wireless transmission.

4. To reduce the likelihood of medical errors and to speed up treatment by quick furnishing of medical information on the user in the hospital, doctor's office or emergency scene or elsewhere.

5. To reduce the time required to fill out forms at a doctor's office or hospital, or before surgery.

6. To provide instant access to insurance information and insurance company contact information.

7. To provide a system which may be used in other countries and which may have medical information in multiple languages.

8. To provide a device which may also include a last letter to loved ones, information about will location, and dental records to confirm the identity of a damaged body.

9. To provide information about metal in the user's body, including X-rays and doctors' certifications, to facilitate passage through airport X-ray machines and magnetometers.

10. To provide information about next of kin in the case of death or for medical decisions for an unconscious user.

11. To provide a method of storing all manner of personally useful information of the user on a small easily portable device which can always be with the user.

REFERENCE NUMERALS IN DRAWINGS

1 small memory chip

2 large memory chip

3 chip envelope

4 medical alert symbol

5 envelope lid

6 slider tabs

7 pendant loop

8 dog tag hole

9 charm loop

10 small chip insert area

11 hinge

12 watch

13 watch band

14 rigid bracelet

15 chain bracelet

16 clasp

17 mesh bracelet

18 solid bracelet

19 hospital band

20 identification slip slot

21 ring

22 shell bracelet

23 chip with USB port

24 chip contacts

25 USB port

26 meshing shells

27 retaining pin

28 pin tacks

29 one piece chain

30 dog tag

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

This Brief Description and the Detailed Description Of The Drawings cover only some embodiments of the Invention, and other embodiments will be clear to those skilled in the art from the description, drawings, and Alternative and Additional Embodiments, etc. The Drawings are illustrative and not limiting.

FIGS. 1a, b, and c and 2a, b, and c show front, back and side views of the small and large memory chips.

FIG. 3 shows the chip envelope closed, and FIG. 4 shows the chip envelope open.

FIG. 5a and b show the chip envelope front and back with slider tabs for attachment to a necklace.

FIGS. 6a and 6b show the padlock style pendant opened and closed.

FIGS. 7a and 7b show the front and back of the dog tag style with chip envelope attached to the back.

FIGS. 8a shows an add-on envelope for a watch band in position, and FIG. 8b shows the back of the envelope. FIG. 9 shows the watch with envelope integrally attached to the watch band. The watch and chip could be in the same case.

FIGS. 10a and 10b show the front and back of the charm version.

FIG. 11a shows a chain charm bracelet. FIG. 11b shows a solid charm bracelet with screw-on ends. Both are for attachment to the charm version of the Invention.

FIG. 12a shows a rigid bracelet, or cuff bracelet, with chip envelope on the back; while

FIG. 12b shows the top of the rigid bracelet with the medical alert symbol.

FIG. 13 shows a man's chain bracelet with hinged clasp containing chip.

FIG. 14 shows a mesh bracelet with hinged section for chip.

FIG. 15a shows a solid bracelet with sliding envelope, and 15b shows the back of slider tabs on envelope.

FIG. 16 shows a stretchy mesh bracelet with fixed envelope.

FIG. 17 shows a hospital band with envelope.

FIGS. 18a and 18b show side and top views of a ring with envelope.

FIG. 19a shows an openable shell bracelet containing the chip inside (not shown), and

FIG. 19b shows the chip with USB port inside, and FIG. 19c shows the opened bracelet and the chip.

FIG. 20a and b show the front and back of the pin version of the Invention.

FIG. 21 shows a one-piece chain attached at two ends to the chip envelope.

FIG. 22 shows, just for illustration, a typical template for medical information, although other templates containing more or less medical or personal or contact information could be used. Critical medical information, such as allergies, could be highlighted on the template by color or other highlighting means known to those skilled in the art.

DETAILED DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

The preceding section describes the overall nature of the drawings, and the following descriptions add details about the Figures if needed. Details and techniques of mechanically attaching the chip envelope 3 to various items of jewelry, and the mechanics of jewelry operation are well known to those skilled in the jewelry art, and this Application does not claim those techniques. The chip envelope 3 could be made of various metals, including durable precious metals used in jewelry.

In FIG. 1 the typical dimensions of the mini SD chip would be about 20×22×29 millimeters. FIG. 2 shows the removable mini SD chip and its larger holder with dimensions about 2×24×32 millimeters. FIGS. 1a and 2a show the electrical chip contacts 24. FIG. 2a shows the small chip insert area 10. A small memory chip can be inserted into and make electrical contact with, some models of the large memory chip 2. FIG. 3 and several similar Figures show the basic structure of the chip envelope 3 and the envelope lid 5 which are attached to each other by hinge 11. Medical alert symbol 4 is also shown. FIG. 4 shows the small memory chip I inside the chip envelope 3. FIG. 5b shows slider tabs 6 on the back of slider envelope 3 which may engage a necklace or similar elongated jewelry object. FIG. 6b shows the pendant envelope 3 with the chip I inside it. Pendant loop 7 is also shown. FIG. 7a shows the pendant envelope 3 attached to the back of dog tag 30 containing dog tag hole 8. FIG. 7b is a front view of the dog tag version. FIGS. 8b and 9b show the chip envelope 3 which may be attached to watch band 13 either as an add-on as in FIG. 8a, or as an integral part of the watch band in FIG. 9a. FIGS. 10a shows the front of the chip envelope 3 in the charm version, and 10b shows the back. Both show charm loop 9 for attachment to a bracelet or necklace, etc. FIG. 11a shows a chain charm bracelet and FIG. 11b shows a solid charm bracelet with screw-on ends for use with the charm version. FIG. 12a shows a rigid bracelet 14 with the chip envelope 3 attached to the inside or back. FIG. 12b is an enlarged version of a portion of the front of rigid bracelet 14 with the medical alert symbol 4. FIG. 13 shows a man's chain bracelet 15 with hinged clasp 11 and 16 containing small memory chip 1. FIG. 14 shows a mesh bracelet 17 with hinged chip envelope for chip inside (not shown)

FIG. 15a shows a solid bracelet 18 with sliding envelope 3. FIG. 15b shows the back of envelope 3 with slide tabs 6 to engage the bracelet. FIG. 16 shows a stretchy mesh bracelet 17 with fixed envelope 3. FIG. 17 shows the hospital in-patient version of a band 19 typically made of clear durable and reusable plastic. The identification slip slot 20 holds a slip of paper with patient and doctor information. The chip envelope 3 may have a Velcro closure (not shown). FIG. 18 shows a ring 21 with chip envelope 3 permanently attached. FIG. 19a shows an openable shell bracelet 22 containing a chip inside (not shown). The meshing shells 26 and retaining pin 27 are shown. The retaining pin can extend through a hole in the outer and inner shells, thus securing the shells together. FIG. 19b shows the meshed shells 26 with a chip with USB port 23 inside. FIG. 19c shows the opened shells 26 and the chip with USB port 23 and USB port 25 FIG. 20a shows the front of a jewelry pin version of chip envelope 3 with two pin tacks 28 which are inserted through a garment and secured inside the garment by standard pin tack clamps, not shown. FIG. 21 could represent either a bracelet or necklace depending on its size. It shows a one-piece chain 29 attached at two ends to the chip envelope 3. FIG. 22 is one possible chip template for medical and personal information.

Description—Preferred Embodiment

The following embodiment of the Invention is the embodiment presently preferred by the Inventors, but over time other embodiments and uses may become preferred to those skilled in the art. Throughout this Application the preferred embodiment will generally be referred to as “E-MOM”, meaning Emergency Medical on Microchip.

E-MOM is typically a small, square, flat, thin-as-a-coin, memory chip (see E-MOM memory description). The chip itself will be held in a piece of E-MOM jewelry. There will be initial designs that will be sold in drugstores, supermarkets, a doctor's office as well as the web or a hospital gift shop. The basic model will be a small, silver, square envelope. It can be worn as a pendant or a charm on a bracelet. The second will be a small silver square envelope similar to the pendent but to be worn as a pin. Both men and women will be able to wear these items.

E-MOM will have potentially unlimited variations of jewelry designs. There will be custom pieces that can be ordered over the Internet or through a catalog. Some of the jewelry designs will include a watch, a cuff bracelet, slides, charms for bracelet or necklace, several different styles of lockets, and as technology advances, perhaps even rings.

E-MOM jewelry will be made from gold, silver, platinum, as well as less expensive materials as required. All will have the option to add precious and semi-precious stones. One-of-a-kind pieces can be produced for buyers. The jewelry will be user friendly, unique and stylish. E-MOM jewelry will have the E-mom logo and medical caduceus making it immediately recognizable to medical professionals and first responders.

The E-MOM chip information can be filled out, and changed, by the individual owners in the privacy of their own homes. If they do not have their own personal computer, the chip information can be completed at a local library, an office supply store, an Internet cafe or a physician's office.

The E-MOM may, or may not, have a tracking system, social security numbers, government affiliation or monthly fees. People will be able to change information on the E-MOM as their information changes. E-MOM will have an embedded format for information, a template that, once filled out, can be saved to be viewed later.

The E-MOM packaging will typically have the chip, USB adapter, jewelry and detailed instructions. All personal computers, laptops, BlackBerries™, Palm Pilots™, (or future hardware) are equipped with either a USB port or a slot for a mini SD flash memory chip.

Emergency Medical Technicians (“EMT's”) or First Responders will be trained to recognize the E-MOM logo and caduceus or another medical alert symbol, and they will be equipped with a UBS connector, allowing them to access the E-MOM information regarding the patient. The E-MOM information can then be transmitted via e-mail or wireless methods to a hospital. Medical professionals in a hospital can then review the E-MOM data prior to the patient's arrival. This advance information will allow the hospital to prepare for any special needs, allergies, blood type, preexisting conditions, medications etc. Finally, the emergency room will have critical contact information allowing staff to quickly reach the patient's next of kin and personal physician.

Doctors' offices can use the E-MOM to maintain patients' information. Patients will no longer need to repeatedly fill out the same patient information data sheet visit after visit. They will be able to simply hand their E-MOM to the medical office personnel. The office staff member can then insert the E-MOM into the office computer and print the information. After the doctor visit, they can update any pertinent information onto the E-MOM with back-up on the doctor office computer. Doctor offices will be able to update E-MOM data after each visit, thus insuring it is current and accurate for the next doctor office visit or in case of emergency. In the case of patients with multiple doctors, all information would be timely and accurate, thus eliminating the need for time consuming and expensive chart transfer. E-MOM will save doctors' time as well as patients' time. The Invention can be used to transfer prescription information from the prescribing doctor to a pharmacy. Doctors will have backup information on their office computers of the Invention is lost or damaged.

For medical procedures and surgeries, the E-MOM can be used for a complete patient history rather than having the patient fill out a new patient history prior to every surgery or procedure. Patients will no longer need to be at the hospital two hours before the surgery to fill out lengthy paperwork. In addition, while patients are in the hospital, they can wear their E-MOM on a bracelet rather than a standard flimsy paper information bracelet common to hospitals. There will be a special design for in-patient use made of clear Lucite or similar durable plastic with a slot for the E-MOM chip and a place for the patient's name. The E-MOM will streamline in-patient care by allowing doctors and nurses to make notes and transfer patient information on laptop computers and palm pilots. The E-MOM can be removed from the patient's bracelet and inserted into a PalmPilot™ or laptop for doctors to update notes and instructions, thus eliminating the need to decipher doctors' notoriously poor handwriting.

Insurance companies will benefit from the E-MOM due to more complete and accurate and up-to-date information. The individuals will not have to repeat the same information for every insurance coverage they apply for. The E-MOM will store all of the holder's insurance information for quick and easy reference.

Nursing homes can use the E-MOM to keep track of patients' information, medication, medical conditions, etc. In the case of psychosis, Alzheimer's syndrome, or dementia, the E-MOM can be used to identify the lost patients and help get them back to where they belong. In addition, soldiers can use E-MOM for identification and medical information.

Information that can be stored on the E-MOM chip includes, but is not limited to:

    • Name
    • Address and phone numbers
    • Photo ID
    • Contact information for next of kin
    • Primary care physician name address and phone number
    • Medical specialists
    • Finger prints
    • Date of birth
    • Eye color
    • Contact lenses (if colored)
    • Glasses prescription
    • Blood type
    • Allergies
    • Medications (dosage and frequency)
    • Procedures, dates, outcomes
    • Surgeries, dates, outcomes
    • Family medical history
    • X-rays
    • Diabetes conditions
    • MRI's
    • CAT scans
    • EKG's
    • EEG's
    • Sonograms
    • Pacemaker, history, models
    • Problems with breathing tube if any
    • X-Rays for airport metal detectors and X-rays
    • Power of attorney for children.
    • Social history
    • Alzheimer's syndrome information
    • Do not resuscitate requests
    • Living wills
    • Letters to loved ones
    • Dental X-rays
    • Heart stents
    • Pain pumps
    • Chemotherapy—kind, period, course.
    • AIDS protocols
    • Skin cancer, moles (possible photograph for time period comparison)
    • Mammograms
    • Hearing aids
    • Dentures
    • Insurance information (medical/dental/auto)
    • Vaccination history
    • Childhood illnesses
    • Colonoscopy

Critical information from the above list could be highlighted in color or by other highlighting means such as being listed first, placed in large type size or other attention-getting information display means known to those skilled in the art.

Entering, Storing and Retrieving Information Using E-MOM

The Invention will be very user friendly so that the user with only basic computer skills could program medical information into the device, and change it at will, with no professional assistance. Data can be entered onto the E-MOM memory chip from virtually any application software source. This would include, but is not limited to, all of the Microsoft™ Office products like Excel™, Word™, and PowerPoint™. The E-MOM template is currently set up for data to be entered using Microsoft Word™. Anyone with Microsoft Word software on their computer can enter data into E-MOM, including patients, doctors and staff. In addition, pictures in the form of X-rays, EEG's or EKG's can be stored on E-MOM. Once these pictures are digitized and stored on a computer's hard drive, they can be saved directly onto the e-MOM chip. This also includes scanned images of graphical displays of medical information such as X-rays and other items in the preceding list. Typically the images are stored as “jpg” image documents. After data is entered into E-MOM and saved, it is automatically stored and readily retrieved by using the same software originally used to enter the data. For example, a person's medical history is entered into a Microsoft Word document. Therefore, Microsoft Word is used to access the original information to read or update. The entry and storage of such medical information on the microchip, and its retrieval and display on a computer, as well as changing such information, are all well-known to those skilled in the art. In summary, the E-MOM memory chip can be used to enter, store and retrieve any digitized data that can be input from any common application software source.

E-MOM Flash Memory

E-MOM stores information on a flash memory device. Flash memory is used for easy and fast information storage in portable devices like digital cameras, picture cell phones and video game consoles. Flash memory is non-volatile, which means that it does not need power to maintain the information stored in the chip. Flash memory is a solid state storage device with no moving parts; everything is electronic. Flash memory chips range widely in information storage capacity from kilobytes to hundreds of megabytes each. There are a number of flash memory manufacturers, including but not limited to SanDisk, Samsung, lomega, Memorex, JMTek, Kingston and Lexar. All types of digitized data can be entered, accessed and stored on flash memory devices. This includes letters, symbols, numbers and pictures. SanDisk chips are available from SanDisk Corporation 601 McCarthy Boulevard, Milpitas, Calif. 95035.

E-MOM Flash Memory Specifications

E-MOM currently uses a 128 MB mini SD flash memory chip, but similar larger chips could be used to store more information.

Characteristics of the 128 MB mini SD flash memory chip include the following:

High data transfer rate for fast download and copy

Highly Durable: Store, erase and reuse

Designed to withstand rugged weather

Security level complies with SDMI portable device requirements

Works with existing SD card slots by using an adapter

Adapters used with E-MOM

If a computer has a slot sized to accept a mini SD flash memory chip, no adapters are required to enter, access, or store information on the E-MOM chip. However, many computers have a larger slot to accommodate a full sized SD card. E-MOM comes with a full sized SD adapter that the mini SD flash memory chip fits into. Computers that can accommodate the full sized SD card can directly use this adapter for entering, accessing and recording information on the E-MOM mini SD flash memory chip. For computers that have only a USB port, USB adapters can be purchased that can either accommodate a mini SD flash memory chip or the full sized SD card with the E-MOM mini SD chip inserted into it.

The physical specifications for the full sized SD adapter card are as follows:

Length: 32 mm

Width: 24 mm

Height: 2.1 mm

Weight: 2.0 grams max

The physical specifications for different USB adapters vary, but do not constrain using E-MOM.

Operation of One Embodiment

See also section above on Preferred Embodiment. The microchip stores information on a flash memory device, typically a mini SD flash memory chip, although other chips can be used. The chip can be programmed by virtually all personal computers sold in recent years by means of their USB port (for versions of the invention having a USB connector) or a chip holder/adapter designed to receive the chip and having a cable with USB connector. The information template can be programmed onto the chip using Microsoft Word™. The template consists of protected fields that cannot be written over and fields that allow the owner or medical professionals to enter patient information. Once the mini-SD chip has been programmed, it can be plugged into a variety of electronic devices which can read the data stored on the chip or enter new data on the chip. The chip would be compatible with many readout means including personal computers and many hand-held devices including BlackBerries™, PalmPilots™, some newer cell phones and wireless devices and cameras, all of which can function as information display devices. The data entered into the chip can include words, numbers, graphs, pictures, x-rays or virtually any data that cab be stored on a personal computer. The connection of the chip to devices and use of the devices to read or store data are well known to those skilled in the art. The E-MOM computer file is labeled as such so as to be readily readable.

Tests of One Embodiment

The Inventors have tested the invention and it works well. Virtually all personal computers sold over the past five years have a slot to accommodate the mini SD chip, a full-size SD chip or a USB port. Based on the computer's configuration, the mini chip the chip was plugged into the SD adapter that comes with the mini SD chip, and then the SD adapter was plugged into the USB adapter. The USB adapter fit directly into the computer, and the mini SD chip was ready to be programmed. Using Microsoft Word™, the template was programmed into the chip. The template consisted of protected fields that cannot be written over, and fields that allow individuals or medical professionals to enter additional patient information. Once the chip was programmed, it was plugged into a variety of electronic devices for data to be read from the chip or for new data to be entered into the chip. The memory chip is compatible with virtually all personal computers and numerous handheld devices including BlackBerries™, PalmPilots™ and some of the newer cell phones. The memory chip was tested using all of the above devices. The test included reading information already on the chip and saving information to the chip. The data entered onto the chip included words, numbers, graphs, pictures, and x-rays.

Additional Embodiments

The memory chip may be in a thin plastic sleeve, or the chip container may have an internal plastic coating to provide added protection to the chip. The method of the invention may also include the step of transmitting information on the chip by radio, cell phone, email, fax or other electronic transmission to other medical service providers. Other items of jewelry could include ankle bracelets, hair accessories, eyeglasses, earrings, belt buckles, belly button rings, eyeglasses straps, strings or bead holders, or other jewelry means.

Alternative Embodiments

An alternative embodiment of the invention may involve wireless recording of data onto the memory chip and wireless reading of data from the chip by means of a microcircuit radio transmitter and receiver attached to the chip and a corresponding radio transmitter and receiver attached to an adapter which sends information by cable into and from a computer or similar device. One method of wireless information would include current “Blink” technology used for newer credit cards. The details of such transmitters and receivers are well known to those skilled in the art and the details of such devices are not claimed as part of the Invention. An alternative embodiment of the pin in FIG. 20b may have a safety pin on the back instead of pin tabs 28.

CONCLUSIONS, RAMIFICATIONS AND SCOPE

A number of changes are possible to the methods and parts described above while still remaining within the scope and spirit of the Invention. The specifics about the form of the Invention described in this application (including the specifics in the Summary, Abstract, Preferred Embodiment, Additional Embodiments, and Alternative Embodiments, etc.) are examples and are not intended to be limiting in scope. Those skilled in the art will recognize certain modifications, permutations, additions, subtractions and sub-combinations thereof, and may discover new fields of use. The scope of the Invention is to be determined by the claims and their legal equivalents, not the examples, purposes, summary, preferred embodiments, alternative or additional embodiments, operation, tests, etc. given above. It is intended that the claims are interpreted to include all such modifications, additions, subtractions, permutations and sub-combinations as are within their true spirit and scope.