Verizon Telephone Pioneers Provide 'Vial of Life' To Elderly in Maryland

BALTIMORE -- Verizon Telephone Pioneers in Maryland are helping to ensure critical information is quickly available to medical personnel when an emergency strikes elderly people.

Verizon Pioneers are funding the Maryland "Vial of Life" program, part of a national effort to assist emergency rescue teams in treating elderly persons who are found home alone and unconscious or unable to communicate.

Under the program, amber-colored medicine vials are distributed to the elderly. The vial, located in the person's refrigerator, contains a form with vital information on the person's doctor, emergency contact and insurance provider, as well as any medications or allergies. This information is readily available to emergency workers should the person be unable to speak.

A red sticker placed outside the person's home notes that the vial is present. Emergency personnel in Maryland are trained to look for the red sticker in responding to calls.

Seniors are encouraged to take the vial when they visit their doctor so the enclosed medical information can be updated.

Verizon Pioneers have distributed Vials of Life to about 60,000 Maryland homes through such organizations as the Maryland Department on Aging, Meals on Wheels of Central Maryland and the Catholic Church Archdiocese of Baltimore.

People who would like to participate in the "Vial of Life" program should contact one of these organizations. "Verizon Pioneers have a proud tradition of assisting others, and the 'Vial of Life' program helps to reassure those who could be faced with a life-threatening situation," said Nancy Tucker, president of the Maryland chapter of the Telephone Pioneers. "These small pill bottles can play a critical role in saving lives."

Verizon Telephone Pioneers are active and retired employees of Verizon who participate in community service projects. The Maryland chapter is a part of the Telephone Pioneers of America, the world's largest industry-based, community service organization, with more than 800,000 members.

Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) is one of the world's leading providers of communications services. Verizon companies are the largest providers of wireline and wireless communications in the United States, with 128.5 million access line equivalents and 28.7 million wireless customers. Verizon is also the largest directory publisher in the world. A Fortune 10 company with 256,000 employees and approximately $65 billion in annual revenues, Verizon's global presence extends to more than 40 countries in the Americas, Europe, Asia and the Pacific. For more information on Verizon, visit www.verizon.com.