File of Life Program

File of Life Sleeve Bag

On Wednesday, October 11, 2023, Prince William County Fire and Rescue System introduced the File of Life Program, a community initiative. The program is designed to enable fire and rescue personnel the ability to obtain a quick and accurate medical history of a patient when a patient or family member is unable to provide one. The “File of Life” information card provides an area to list contact information for the patient’s doctor, family members, insurance information and any other special circumstances that rescue personnel should know in caring for the patient. Chief Tom LaBelle states, “During an emergency, “the File of Life is an additional communication tool that enables first responders to quickly access a patient’s vital medical history when a patient cannot do so.“

In addition, the File of Life has a place for noting an individual’s DNR (Do Not Resuscitate) order. A Do Not Resuscitate Order is a legal order, signed by a physician instructing medical professionals to withhold CPR, or other interventions if a person’s heart or breathing stops. The File of Life is not a valid DNR; therefore, participants are encouraged to record, on the File of Life card, the location of their original DNR to assist healthcare providers when administering emergency care.  

Information provided on the File of Life card should be completed in English and in pencil, to assist in the recording of essential and medical updates. The File of Life card is enclosed in a clear magnetic pouch, for placement on the outside of the refrigerator, providing ease of visibility and accessibility for fire and rescue personnel.

The File of Life card with magnetic packet (as pictured above) is available at your local fire station.  Click on the links, English or Spanish, to obtain the File of Life in the desired language.  Once printed, insert the card in a plastic zip lock bag and adhere the card and baggie to your refrigerator using a refrigerator magnet.

For additional information, please contact Public Education Coordinator Christopher Brothers at 703-792-7736 or [email protected].