First aid, translated

The 1st Minute Mobile App provides language translation during medical emergencies. When first responders (EMS) assist patients with limited English proficiency, the language barrier can pose real problems. The App prompts the patient to choose their language and add symptoms in a checklist format including pain location and severity, medical history, allergies, and medications. This information is translated back to the language of the responder who now knows how to assist them.

An upcoming version of the app is for travelers and tourists who can use it to immediately communicate their medical history and symptoms to paramedics, ERs, and pharmacies in foreign countries. The App does not require an Internet connection since it has a pre-populated language database.

  • Quick assessment
  • Reduces guessing by first responders
  • No cellular/internet connection required
  • Facilitates a relevant conversation in less time (within 60 seconds)
  • Language translation and mobile health technology that’s part of the future of 9-1-1
  • Get it on Google Play
Helping First Responders with language translation in under 60 seconds
Inaugural class of accelerator

1st Minute as seen in



Launch DFW

Dallas Morning News

1 Million Cups

AT&T Hackathon

How it works

1st Minute will simplify getting the basic details from a foreign language speaker. It does not provide medical advice but instead facilitates the conversation first responders are already trained to have.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is the App HIPAA compliant and are there any other privacy concerns?

HIPAA-square-logoThe 1st MinuteApp is HIPAA compliant. It deals only with patient-generated data. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) protects the privacy of individually identifiable health information. Since the App does not collect nor share such health information, like name, date of birth, or Social Security Number, there is no invasion of privacy. We are closely tracking the call for reforms to HIPAA that reflect the changing nature of personal health data, dispatch liability, and the digital health industry’s intention to protect the safety and wellbeing of patients.

The 1st Minute App has the ability to operate in a Location-Based Service (LBS) mode which makes use of the geographical position of one’s mobile device. Public Safety organizations with an enterprise version of the App may choose to enable LBS functionality to show where patient translation incidents occur. This data can be aggregated over time to provide city or agency leadership with understanding of which language barriers exists, how often they are faced, and which parts of the city they occur in. This is an optional feature that is not enabled by default in the individual download of the App. Opt-in is required to engage this functionality. In this regard, only the current location of the device is stored (no continuous geographic tracking is recorded) and one’s identity is never known to the 1st Minute application.

How many non-English Speakers are there in the US?

In last 30 years, non-English speaking homes have grown by 300% compared to 38% population growth.

Furthermore, it is estimated that there are 100 million non-English speakers visiting the US per year and 30 million already in the US with very limited English speaking skills.  In discussions with first responders in large cities, they’ve experienced difficult conversations with those who speak languages like Vietnamese, Burmese, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean.

What are some challenges first responders face in the EMS Operational Environment?

  • They must ensure effective and timely responses to protect people / property
  • They have a need to query databases to gain as much information as possible
  • To rapidly process a flood of information, filtering out relevant information
  • To effectively communicate information about an event to the next level of care (medical facilities)

How important are the first few minutes in a 911 health emergency?

If first responders don’t know exactly what’s going on, they may make a default decision and take them to the hospital.  Emergency department leaders want to know more than just their vital signs.  If the hospital is 45 minutes away and the person just has a headache or the flu (something non-life threatening), then it could be a costly and wasted trip.  If the patient is having problems related to stroke or the heart, then seconds count.

More questions?

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Story behind the app

LanguageMAPS Inc was formed in November, 2014 after a group of creative individuals came together in June to win 1st place in AT&T Public Safety Hackathon Event held in Dallas, Texas. The Department of Homeland Security partnered with AT&T to put on a hack-a-thon that addressed the needed of 1st responders - an underutilized market for the mobile app revolution of the last few years.

One hack-a-thon participant related a story about coming across a person who didn't speak English but needed some urgent care. The 1st responders struggled communicating with them due to a language barrier and valuable time was lost due to this hurdle. A group was formed around finding a solution to this problem and 1st Minute's precursor (REDLiNE) was born.

What are people saying?

LanguageMAPS is working on a great product that solves a real need. I have been a firefighter/paramedic for a decade now, and have consistently faced a language barrier problem throughout my career. But I have never seen a viable solution, until now. 1st Minute is not only a highly useful product, it will directly contribute to better patient outcomes in emergency situations.

— Fire/EMS Lieutenant

The 1st Minute app from LanguageMAPS Inc is the most useful and innovative new product that I have seen in the field of EMS in many years. It allows the EMS provider to quickly and accurately triage and treat patients that we were previously unable to communicate effectively with in the past. This asset greatly increases any organization’s capability in providing top-notch care to non-English speaking patients. I encourage all caregivers to add this app to their toolbox.

— EMS Captain

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