How to Set Up an Emergency Contact on Your iPhone with iOS 17

Apple’s iOS 17 is emphasizing the security of its users more than ever. It’s essential to be prepared during emergencies for both your safety and the safety of your loved ones. Setting up an emergency contact on your iPhone can offer this peace of mind. In this article, I’ll walk you through the easy steps to add or remove an emergency contact.

What’s an Emergency Contact?

An emergency contact is someone you trust, usually a close friend or family member, who can be reached during emergencies. This person would know important details about you and can make decisions for you if you can’t. This feature is available across various Apple devices, like the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch.

Emergency Contact on iPhone

Why Have an Emergency Contact?

  • Quick Calls: If you’re in danger, unconscious, or can’t speak, first responders can quickly reach out to your emergency contacts.
  • Making Choices: Emergency contacts can make important decisions, like medical treatments if you can’t.
  • Vital Information: They can share crucial details like your allergies or ongoing medicines, helping medical staff act efficiently.
  • Support: Your emergency contacts can offer emotional support or assistance during tough times.
  • Updates on Your Whereabouts: Using the Emergency SOS on your device will alert and update your contacts about your location.

If you press and hold the Power and Volume buttons for a few seconds, the “Medical ID” option pops up. Apple Watch users can press and hold the side button (not the crown) to see it.

How to Add an Emergency Contact

  • Open the Health app on your iPhone.
  • Tap on your profile picture, at the top-right.
  • Go to Medical ID.
  • Hit Edit in the upper-right corner.
Add Emergency Contact on iPhone 1
  • Choose Add Emergency Contact.
  • Pick or search for the contact you’d like to set.
  • Define your relationship with this person.
Add Emergency Contact on iPhone 2
  • Once added, this contact will appear in the Emergency Contact list. Click on “Done” to save.
Add Emergency Contact on iPhone 3

Removing an Emergency Contact

  • Open the Health app on your iPhone.
  • Tap your profile picture, and go to Medical ID.
  • Under the “Emergency Contacts” section, you’ll see your current contacts.
  • Click on “Edit” at the top-right.
  • Find the contact to remove and tap the red minus (-) next to their name. Then, tap “Delete“.
  • Save your changes by clicking “Done“.
How to Remove Emergency Contact on iPhone

By setting this up, even if your iPhone is locked, first responders can see your Medical ID and reach out to your contacts.


Adding emergency contacts on your iPhone could be a lifesaver. This step-by-step guide ensures you’re ready for emergencies, keeping you and your contacts connected.


Can emergency contacts be accessed even if the iPhone is locked?

Yes, they can. Use the Emergency SOS feature on the lock screen.

How to access Medical ID in case of an emergency?

On your locked iPhone screen, swipe up, tap “Emergency”, then tap “Medical ID” in the bottom-left corner.

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