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Julianne with her mum Yvette
Julianne Ponan

FOOD ENTREPRENEUR JULIANNE PONAN APPOINTED FIRST EVER AMBASSADOR FOR MEDICALERT

ENTREPRENEUR Julianne Ponan, known across the UK as a leading campaigner for those living with allergies, has been appointed as the first ambassador for the charity MedicAlert, the UK’s only charity offering medical ID services.

The MedicAlert Foundation has 57 years’ experience as a charity supporting as many people as possible to access their service. Their IDs are worn on pulse points as a bracelet or necklace. They will be seen in the event of an emergency by first responders. This enables quick identification of the best initial treatment, including what medication must not be given. 

“I’m honoured to be asked to take on this role and raise awareness of medical IDs. When you suffer from a condition like mine, wearing something like this is easy and it’s a no-brainer. It means if I was unable to communicate, medical professionals would be able to treat me safely,” Julianne, who lives in Surrey, said. 

Julianne has been living with severe allergies from a young age. Her first anaphylaxis incident was at the age of just two. Since she has experienced several anaphylaxis episodes and ended up in intensive care, once when she inhaled her father’s aftershave.

“I know what it’s like to find that you are struggling to breathe and not even know what’s caused it. That’s why I’m supporting this charity alongside my mum Yvette. She suffered a sudden and unexpected brain aneurysm last year. By some miracle she survived however she can find communication difficult,” Julianne said. 

Julianne’s dedication to helping improve the lives of families living with allergies is tireless. In addition to lobbying on behalf of those with allergies in the press, social media, and with politicians, Julianne founded Creative Nature Superfoods ten years ago. She launched a range of healthy top 14 allergen-free foods for people like her. 

As a result of her recent work with MedicAlert, Julianne’s mum Yvette, who suffered an unexpected brain aneurysm a year ago also wears one so that first responders know her recent medical history. 

At MedicAlert, would-be members enter their medical details via an online application. A registered nurse then reviews them and checks that the most vital information will be engraved on their MedicAlert ID. The security of this life-saving service gives members the confidence to take part in physical and social activities. 

MedicAlert CEO Kirsten Giles commented: "We appreciate the enormous challenges faced by individuals, parents and families who have allergies, from playdates to parties or going to a restaurant. 

“Each activity needs careful planning, and being a MedicAlert member makes many of these things easier. We are delighted that Julianne is helping raise awareness of our charity which gives people living with allergies the peace of mind to live their lives to the full." 

The MedicAlert Foundation was founded as a charity in 1956 by Dr Marion and Chrissie Collins to protect their 14-year-old daughter and others. She was given a dose of tetanus antitoxin during treatment and went into near-fatal anaphylactic shock. Luckily, she survived. 

Her father then pinned a paper label ‘allergic to tetanus toxoid’ to her coat until she got so fed up with it that he developed the first MedicAlert bracelet. For more information about the charity and to register visit https://www.medicalert.org.uk

Fiona Scott Media Consultancy Bath

Scott Media

Scott Media is run by a UK-based journalist with more than 20 years' experience in the media - print, radio and television.

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