It’s Patient Safety Awareness Week, so we have some tips from the National Patient Safety Foundation to help you protect yourself.
The key is communication with your doctors. This means making sure you understand everything your doctor is telling you, and sharing things that can help them. Tell them things like if you’ve been injured, if you’ve changed your diet or exercise habits, or if you haven’t been able to sleep.
Ask lots of questions! They want you to understand your disease and treatment, so make sure you understand your medicines, condition, and treatment plans.
If you’ve been diagnosed with a condition, learn more about it. You can protect yourself by learning more with materials from your doctor, online resources, and even disease management info from us.
Make sure you carry an updated list of the medicines, vitamins, and supplements you’re taking to all your appointments with doctors, so you can make sure your whole care team is on the same page.
Speak up if you think you’re getting the wrong prescription, treatment, or you think you’re being made to leave the hospital too soon. Your doctor can help you make sure you’re getting the right care.
If you have a test at the doctor’s office, follow up if you never get or hear your results. Never assume “no news is good news.”
Have a list of contacts ready. Make sure you have the names and info to contact all of your doctors available, and that your doctor knows who to contact or who should act for you in an emergency.