Plan ahead. Be prepared. Take Action – A Helpful Reminder
An anonymous public service message from a concerned citizen in Hancock County:
Who do you trust to advocate for you and carry out your wishes in the event of an accident, illness or an unexpected turn of events?
Please prepare NOW and provide trusted members of your family with a list of such details as:
Your name, your birth date, your doctor’s name & phone number, medications you take, dosage information of each one, medications you cannot take, allergies, the style and serial number of medical devices such as pacemakers, medical history forms, emergency contacts, what drug store you use, insurance information, monthly bills you pay, a copy of your living will, your medical surrogate information and anything that someone you can trust should have in the event that you couldn’t articulate what your preferences are.
Make a complete checklist of everything important to you in the event that you cannot articulate. A trusted person should have the list ready and be someone who will be vocal and stand up for your preferences. Also, know your rights as a hospital patient and carry a copy of those rights. Give that list of rights to your advocate as well.
You should have a hard copy of your day-to-day for whomever is going to be advocating for you in an emergency. Perhaps several of your family members should have a copy put away in a safe place.
Keep your more personal information such as your bank information, passwords, etc. in a hardback book that is kept in a safe or other water and fire proof container. You can then give the password to the safe or whereabouts of the information to one trusted person. This trusted person can also be placed on your bank account as a beneficiary.
You can also designate a successor patient advocate who will be your patient advocate if the first person you named cannot be your patient advocate for some unforeseen reason.
These are just suggestions. Make a plan that is right for you and don’t wait. Do it now.