Don’t Roll the Dice with Your Health

I recently met a woman named Madeline in a rehab facility while visiting a family member.  She was there recovering from a stroke and was looking forward to getting back home.  I acknowledged how well she was doing considering the circumstances.  She said “It all comes down to being in the right place at the right time.”  She went on to explain that she was actually in her doctor’s office in the building attached to the hospital when she had the stroke, within minutes they had her in the emergency room.

She then said “It’s my own fault I had the stroke, I went off my blood thinners in anticipation of a procedure with a specialist and didn’t talk to my primary doctor before doing it.”

I found her story very insightful and wanted to share some ways to be pro-active when it comes to multiple care providers.

  • Don’t assume that your doctors communicate with each other.
  • Always bring either a list of your current medications with times daily and dosage or the actual bottles to every appointment with every doctor (including your dentist).
  • If you have scheduled a test or procedure with a specialist call your primary doctors office to make them aware of it. 
  • When having any tests run, ask them to send a copy of the results to your primary doctor as well.
  • You have the right to get copies of your medical records and tests results.  Make sure to ask for a copy for your personal records.

We can’t all be in the right place at the right time when a health emergency occurs, however; by communicating with your primary doctor about upcoming tests and procedures you may be able to steer clear of potential life threatening issues.

About Sue Salach

Sue has a Master's degree in Gerontology and has worked with the elderly and their families for over 30 years and is the Author of "Along Comes Grandpa", a caregiving resource guide, and the novel "If I Walked in Her Shoes". As an ElderCare Expert and Keynote Speaker, Sue employs her comprehensive experience and passion, to educate and promote self-care values to family caregivers and the community at large.
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8 Responses to Don’t Roll the Dice with Your Health

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  2. Mabenta says:

    BetteJanuary 26, 2011I enjoyed this show so much. Dr. Combs helarfett honesty and concern for caregivers was very evident. I thought as my mother’s dementia worsened and the confusion heightened, that it would be easier for me to think about: additional help that I need, and care that she needs or in thinking that nursing home care might be needed at some point. Her changes have made me feel just the opposite. I feel like in her added needs, I am needed more (in some ways exclusively). That she needs me to be her voice, and help her in her thinking she sometimes fears things that aren’t there, or looks for things that she doesn’t need.Dr. Combs’ last comment about caregiving vs. caremaking will be important for me to remember when the feelings of I can be the only one creep in.I am the caregiver giving care, but I am not the total caremaker. Caremaker takes on a meaning for me of others participating, it gives me permission to include others in her care.


  3. Keyla says:

    Your post has moved the debate forward. Thanks for saihrng!


  4. GREAT publish and impressive in turn …will bear a try all the tips..Thanks……


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  7. Lisa Powell says:

    Thank you so much for this great information.


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