6 Medical Record Keeping Tips for Caregivers
Emergencies come with caregiving. Whether an emergency means accompanying a loved one to the ER or making a trip to the person’s home or nursing home, the more information we have at our finger tips the better.
The medical visits, medication changes and behavioral episodes caregivers help their loved ones through can become a blur to us. Yet, in an emergency, remembering – or forgetting – one medication change can save time or possibly even save a life.
Maintaining orderly records containing pertinent information for your loved one will help smooth the way during a crisis. You can use an electronic device to store information or keep a notebook handy. How you do it doesn’t matter. Just do it.
Besides the detailed records you maintain you should keep an at-a-glance sheet in an obvious place in your loved one’s home. This should enable emergency responders to quickly access information about chronic conditions, medications, allergies and doctors.
Your mom who just changed medications has recently been experiencing horrible dreams. Write down each medication change along with the date prescribed. Also, note behavioral changes. You’ll more easily make connections to possible negative side effects of drugs.
Maintaining records on new doctors, new medications, new allergies and new behaviors may seem like one more burden for your overtaxed life. Yet this habit could save hours of guess work and backtracking if an alarming change occurs in your loved one’s health.