I am a very active person and consider myself to be pretty darn healthy. I felt there was no need to keep track of the few medical records that may be out there about me. I only have a few little issues that come with my body getting older. When I was at the doctor not long ago, discussing a possible hysterectomy, the doctor started asking me for dates and places I had had ultra sounds, mammograms, blood work ect. I gave him a puzzled look and said "Don't YOU have all my records!?" He seemed a bit frustrated with me that I didn't have this information and he then explained that different doctors ask for different tests at different times and that it is MY responsibility to keep good records of everything together in one place. Yikes! But I am healthy! It's been years since I have had certain test done! I guess we live and learn!
Moral of the Story
Moral of the Story is that we should all have a Portable Medical File. I have a great filing system that I keep most all of my important documents in. These files go in my file cabinet. I share this system in one of my YouTube video's that you can check out. BUT there are some types of documents that are just better to have in a "Portable" File.
Colored notebooks/binders are great to use for storing documents you want to be able to take with you. I like to color code things so that they are easy to find. AND they look pretty! :)
Today lets just talk about putting together a Portable Medical File.
Type of Binder/Notebook to Use
A simple notebook/ binder is a great way to store things for a Portable File. I have given you a couple examples above. I highly recommend a binder where you can slip a "Title Page" into the front cover and also on the sleeve of the binder. You absolutely want to see the title of the notebook while it is standing up! You could order something like this on Amazon if you don't want to go out shopping.
My children are all out of the house so I just need one Medical File for me and one for the husband. But if you have children, you might want to put all their records into one notebook/binder that you are able to quickly grab when you're heading to doctor appointments. If you have a child that has medical issues, you would want to have a notebook just for them.
Other Needed Items
Ready Index Tabs by Avery- These are my favorite! You can write a sentence for tab if you needed to! They have packets with different number of Tabs. I think 10 works nicely for my Medical Binder. Once you have your Ready Index Dividers, go on line and just google the templet needed. It's a quick download, and then you just fill out the blank spaces. You could just write your info in with a pen if you prefer.
Sheet Protectors- You will want to have a few sheet protectors when putting together your Binder. You will use this for papers that aren't the typical paper size, like your children's shot records.
Three whole punch- You want to have everything secure with pages that turn easily. Just having pockets won't work as nicely.
The way you organize your Tabs needs to make sense to you. I suggest the first tab though is just a list you add to, everytime somebody goes to the doctor. Write the name of the person going to the doctor, the date and name and type of doctor.
Everything else can be organized in a way that best fits your family.
Having your Medical File be portable makes it so easy to grab and go when you leave for any doctors appointment! You'll have all your shot cards together that will be easy for the nurse to update. You'll also have records of all passed appointments and lists of test that may have been taken in the past incase a doctor may need to compare. You can also have a list of prescriptions a family member may take with Mg and dosage ect. This notebook will be so handy to have, ready to go, if something unexpected comes up. Don't wait till you are panicking trying to call and look around for that important information!
I can feel some of you getting overwhelmed about a new project to pull together. Keep it simple! Just buy a notebook and divide up by family members to start. Throw in any information you have. And from now on, just keep that list in the front of the book and jot down dates of who went to what doctor and when. That is huge! Records could usually be found from there. Simple! Start today!
Good luck and remember to stay organized!