It can be very stressful when your child must change doctors. Change comes when your child ages out of their pediatrician’s care and must find a new doctor that provides adult care, or when your child is being referred to yet another new specialist. So how can we as parents plan to make these new doctor visits more effective for both the doctor and our child’s care?
Parents often express the struggles we have in remembering what medications, treatments, therapies, and referrals have been tried with our child. It would be handy if we have this information with us when we are meeting with the doctor.
One strategy is to create a medical binder, also called a care notebook. A medical binder has all the necessary information that needs to be taken to a doctor’s appointment. We can use this tool with our existing doctor and definitely use it when we start working with a new physician.
What other things might we want to include in this binder? Here is a place to start:
These are only some examples of what can be placed in the care binder. It is good to include anything else that comes to mind that will help us and the doctor.
We do not want to keep all the years of documents in one binder. This is just too much. The best way to approach this is to put the two most recent ones in the binder.
The older documents should be kept in a box labeled “medical information” and in a secure place. There might be a need at some point to go back and review that information.
These same strategies can be used for school information, such as IEP’s and school report cards. These are just a few tips to get us organized and make our visits more productive.
Learn about how to create a Care Notebook and manage your child’s medical records.
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