As family members and caretakers, we play a large role in overseeing the medical needs of our loved ones. Your relationship with medical professionals is based on trust, communication and understanding. The stronger the patient-physician relationship, the more value it provides. It’s been shown that individuals who establish relationships with their doctors tend to have better health outcomes. Building a plan of care that includes their doctor enables you to help meet the medical needs of your loved one throughout their later years.
Here’s how you can establish a relationship and keep it on track:
- Prepare for your appointment.
Bring all current medications, along with notes and facts about the state of health of your loved one. Write down any recent health problems or concerns that you have beforehand, so you make sure to bring them up.
- Choose a relationship style.
Whether it’s a new doctor that you’re meeting for the first time or one that you’ve had a relationship with for a while, state clearly at the beginning of your visit that you want to be involved as a partner in the decision-making process.
- Provide some background.
Share your point of view. How is a new technique working? You should let your doctor know either way. If your loved one has a complicated medical history, or if you are meeting with a new doctor, bring a summary of recent tests, treatments and health problems so the doctor understands quickly.
- Make sure you leave with the information you need.
You need to leave the doctor’s appointment with the information to provide care. Record your visit, or bring someone to take notes. There’s often a lot of information to absorb during a doctor’s appointment, particularly if you’re facing a major, frightening health challenge. You may be distracted by trying to take in a diagnosis, so it can be helpful to take notes of everything discussed.
- Ask how to reach your doctor after hours.
It’s important to ask your doctor how to keep in touch in the event of a medical emergency that happens outside of regular hours. Every doctor will have a different preference, so find out which method works best. If you know the system for getting in touch before a crisis.
Our carepartners are dedicated to improving quality of life. NursePartners works diligently to ensure carepartners fill their time together with positive interactions. By keeping a record of everything from mood behaviors to daily activities, we can begin to understand which factors contribute to positive moods and overall happiness. Our carepartners are trained in the Positive Approach to Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care (GEMS™) and work with families to enable safety, comfortability, and happiness through home-care services.
If your loved one need home care assistance or relief, our team would love to help.