Sunday, 1 September 2013

Keeping track of things when someone has a long term medical condition.

Steve was taken ill in Spain in December 2011.  I quickly realised I needed to keep a record of his treatment etc to pass on to the Doctors when he was well enough to return and continue treatment in England.

I managed to come up with a system that seems to work rather well using an A5 spiral note book with 4 separate sections.

Inside the front cover I have written Steve's National Health and Hospital Numbers

In the section called TREATMENT I note the date of hospital / Doctors visits, the person we have seen and the treatment or advice given.  I also make a note of any future appointments given so I can transfer them to my phone and diary later.  Within this section I note the date and details of any side effects or other relevant things that happen between treatments.

The QUESTIONS section is pretty much self explanatory, whenever we come up with a question we  jot it down here and often write the answer there to refer back to.  At the back of this section I set up my own mini dictionary with the English/Spanish translations of medical phrases etc.

MEDICATION takes up a large section.  Each time the medication is changed I note it here.  If there is a lot of medication I use a whole page and start with the date at the top and then list it all by the times of day, type of medication and dosage due (I even do a total of how many tablets there should be each time).  When only a small amount of medication is needed I rule across a page and just date each section.

PHONE NUMBERS - At the front of this section I have all the phone contact numbers of family and friends that Steve may need whilst in hospital.  At the back there are all the hospital, clinic and Doctors numbers that we might need.  

Without a doubt this book has been an invaluable point of reference and I would highly recommend something like it to all patients at the onset of cancer or other long term illness.  

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