As you get older, more and more health information you have to deal with crops up. Not only do you have to remember medications, but you have to remember dates of surgeries from earlier years. It’s a good idea to start collecting all of the information pertinent to your medical history, often called a Personal Health Record.
A Personal Health Record is not only a collection of your past health information, physician and specialist visits, medications, etc., it is also a place to compile future information you’ll need, such as take-home instructions from a hospital stay, home care services contact information, tips for preventing injury at home, and more. Whether you are keeping and organizing physical documents, or using an app on your smartphone or tablet, having all of your valuable health information in place can be a life-saver in an emergency.
A Personal Health Record is best utilized when organized in different sections. Below are some suggestions on how to divide your Personal Health Record, and what should be included in each section.
- The general information category: This section incudes emergency contacts and phone numbers, health-insurance information and your health history.
- Advance Directives: This would include your health care proxy, the location of your living will, and your power of attorney.
- Health events: This is all the information about different health issues you have had such as hospitalizations, surgeries, and emergency room visits.
- Going home checklist: This list is for when you are being discharged from the hospital. It stores all the necessary information you will need when you’re leaving the hospital or nursing home. The instructions will be right there so you won’t forget anything once you are home.
- Health-care team: This includes all the contact information for your doctors and other health care providers such as phone numbers, addresses and contact persons.
- Medications: This lists what pharmacy you deal with and what medications you take. It also gives the dosages of medications and any detailed instructions that are necessary.
- Tests and Results: This list will give results of any test you have taken and if any tests are pending.
- Limitations, Restrictions and Special instructions: This section will list any limitations which have been put on you or that you have. It will also list any restrictions or special instructions which the doctor has issued.
- Home Care Services: This has information on where you can get in touch for senior care services, Medicaid, Medicare and any home care information you may need.
- Fall prevention: This section will cover questions you may have about types of exercises; also eye exams, and home safety issues.
- Medical Equipment: If you need any type of medical equipment, this will give you the list you need and how to order it.
When you do go to a doctor appointment, having your Personal Health Record on hand will make your appointment go smoother. You will have a place for questions you want to ask and to store any special instructions the doctor may give you. Your medication list is right there if you are having any issues too. If you need to track you blood pressure, you’ll have the results right there for the doctor to look at.
Making life easier as you get older is what it is all about, and a Personal Health Record will help you do just that!
Care Connection provides senior care in Lansing, MI. For more information about our caregiver services, please call us today at 517 – 381- 2433