The SOS (Save On Site) program is now rolling out to Mineral County communities through various resources. Boxes of discarded, non-identifying prescription bottles were collected through February from two care and share facilities; the Schurz Senior Center; the county building, the county nurse’s office and the Mineral County Independent-News office.

A small group of volunteers met on Saturday at the Pizza Factory to assemble each clean bottle with the proper labeling, a folded medical sheet and the vital window sticker, which clearly identifies any resident participating in the program when a first responder arrives. The window sticker is necessary to allow emergency personnel to open a refrigerator door, obtaining the marked SOS bottle which will then begin to share much needed information to assist the distressed individual.

Catrinna and Kylie Berginnis, Nicole Alcon, Mary Marinello and Sheri Samson created an assembly line to complete all the bottles into an SOS kit. The younger volunteers found the concept to be a much-needed program in this county, with each girl taking some SOS kits to their own grandparents.

The medical sheet also includes an easy three-part instruction format, which is necessary for the program to ultimately work. More volunteers may be needed to assist our seniors with logging in the concise information needed, so it is legible and no item is missed.

Each participant is asked to list an emergency contact person and at the bottom there is pace for “additional important information”. This section was added in case there is pets hidden in the home somewhere, which may require continued care while the patient is away. It may also include a neighbor’s number or close friend who could be contacted to assist with mail or newspaper home delivery issues.

If you know of someone that is disabled, critically ill or a senior, which is homebound, please contact Samson at 951-768-9616 so every individual may receive the proper assistance to receive their SOS bottle. Caregivers, as well as off sight relatives are welcomed to contact our program through Samson to make sure the safety emphasis is properly explained, distributed and the medical information is filled out sufficiently. This program is not just for those living alone. It can also benefit couples in a time of crisis when it can be difficult to keep facts and information straight. It is also important to note that the SOS information within the bottle is not available to the public. It is in the home’s fridge door for safe, fireproof keeping when and if, it is ever needed.

The SOS program is being presented several times at the Care and Share and senior centers, as well as within the staff at the county fire department. A supply of completed bottles will be made available through these resources and also by calling Samson.