The History of the Triage Tag

By Will Smith

The invention of triage revolutionized emergency medicine in the 19th century. The triage tag is a quick way for first responders to share triange information in a disaster.

I really enjoyed this Fast Company article about the history of the triage tag. Triage is used to categorize patients, victims of a disaster, or injured soldiers based on the level of care they need. The triage tag is was designed during the Cold War to convey each patient's triage status between first responders at a disaster scene when there's no infrastructure in place.

First responders perform triage on patients, then ambulance drivers can simply look at the tags to know which patients need care first and the basics of their injuries.