Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Product Review: My ID Square

Sorry -- I distorted the QR because I realized I didn't want my info to be public. And hopefully, I distorted enough that scanning it doesn't work!

I'm complicated in so many ways. In addition to my mystery illness and my collection of assorted diagnoses, I juggle a half dozen or so doctors and an ever-changing laundry list of medications. Even my husband would have a hard time listing them out if I were unable to communicate.

Even before I got sick, I had doctors recommend I wear some kind of medical alert jewelry to identify my penicillin or other allergies. But that never really worked for me because I'm super sensitive to metals against my skin, especially ones worn over long periods. Surgical steel and other supposedly hypo-allergenic metals? Yep, they create the same kind of blisters as sterling silver and other metals. I can tolerate 14-karat gold for some periods of time, but even that eventually irritates my skin if it's in constant contact. The only metals that have never caused a nasty rash are niobium and titanium, and there's just not a lot of medical alert jewelry made from those metals.

The nice folks over at My ID Square contacted me last month to see if I'd be interested in reviewing their IDs. I looked their products over, and politely declined because all their items included metal in one form or another. After a few emails back and forth, they offered to make me a SquID without any metal at all. And I've been wearing it since it arrived a couple weeks ago.

It's kind of ingenious. The SquID itself is some sort of plastic/lucite square with a QR code that can be scanned on one side, and the URL and my ID code on the other side. It's waterproof, and I don't even take it off to sleep or shower.

On their website, I was able to enter contact info for all my doctors, my medication list, and a list of my primary diagnoses.

My thoughts, for what they're worth:

  • I think these SquIDs would be great for kids. They're colorful and fun, and fit right in with the trends I see at my kid's school and at the skate rink. My kid would totally wear one of these. In fact, if the cord for the bracelet they sent wasn't black, she'd probably have wanted to wear mine!
  • I'm not sure they have a very professional look for adults who want to wear them to the office, although some of them come closer than others. And they're definitely not date-night dressy. However, they'd be great for wearing to the beach or when dressed casually. (I told my mom that I thought it was closer to my style than the more grownup, jewelry-looking varieties you can find elsewhere. So take that as you will.)
  • I was really impressed with the company's dedication to figuring out a way to create a SquID that I could wear. When I confirmed that I was allergic to all the options on their website, they went out of their way to figure out how they could make their product work for me. I'm confident that they would respond similarly for a regular customer too.  
  • It seems really durable. Like I mentioned above, I've been wearing mine non-stop since I got it. And I've rubbed at it and scratched at it to see if I could damage it or make it look like it would wear out, but it shows no sign of damage. 
  • I'm mildly concerned about privacy with these. Anyone with a smart phone can scan the QR code and get my name, date of birth, medical issues, etc. But there's also a notification that goes out if/when someone scans it, so at least I would know if it were happening. And it hasn't happened yet, and probably isn't a major concern. I do think the benefits of having this info available to first responders and emergency room personnel outweighs the risks. 
If you think you might be interested in buying one of these, go visit and the code SickMomma15 will save you 15 percent through April 15. 

Disclosures: My opinions are totally my own, and I've mentioned the only negatives I can think of about this product as well as the positives. The company did provide me with a free SquID for review purposes.