‘Umergency’ – A Great App

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Let’s say, for example, that your young adult child is a student at a college far away from home. You learn there has been a terrible accident at your son’s or daughter’s college, whereby a roof has collapsed on the college library. It immediately puts you in a panic mode. And, as parents, rightfully so. You need to know if your child has been involved.

Fortunately, since safety is such an important issue these days, there is a new app that has recently been launched. It is named ‘Umergency.’ It has been developed to connect students in college with their families in case there is a medical emergency while living away from home. The co-founder of the app, Gail Schenbaum, the app will provide parents with all the information they require to help their child the best way possible.

Katelyn Parzych, the University of Connecticut Umergency ambassador, urges students to download the app. She said it will provide the students with everything they need, including an ‘Urgent Alert’ button, which immediately contacts your specific contacts indicating your GPS location, indicating you need assistance. It also will note the nearest Urgent Care as well as ER facilities. Other contacts such as the National Hotlines for Sexual Assault, the Suicide Prevention and Poison Control, and information such as a copy of your insurance card and a signed digital consent from allowing your family to speak with medical staff are all included.

The app can be downloaded from Google Play or the App Store. Students can also upload their insurance cards as well as choose the university they attend. Once the required information has been downloaded, the app produces all of the emergency resources in seconds. These include everything custom to the particular school community, as well as health, fire, and police.

Once the app has been downloaded, s/he needs to invite all of the people they choose to maintain close contacts with, such as roommates, friends, and parents. If the student should one day experience an emergency s/he would press the urgent alert beacon. This would then immediately notify anyone in close contact with their GPS location. It would also alert the person to send help immediately.

Schenbaum said she developed the idea for Umergency because her daughter suffered a medical emergency when she was a freshman in college. She said her husband, and she received a call late at night. It was her daughter, in an ambulance, still conscious and able to talk. The EMT said there was a partial amputation. However, after they pulled into the emergency area, they hung up. She explained that she and her husband were left in a deep worry, miles away. They didn’t know where their daughter was. They didn’t know what happened to her or how they could contact her.

Schenbaum and her husband eventually were able to get the details they needed, but the worry hung over them until they arrived at the hospital. She said all of the fear and anxiety gave her the incentive to create the new app to help prevent other parents from suffering from such worry.