You’ve been so focused on your chronic conditions that you've neglected your routine preventive health. Even in a pandemic, don’t overlook routine screenings. In most cases, early detection of disease allows for early treatment and improved outcomes.
You have the ability to improve your health by regularly monitoring your chronic condition, knowing when to talk to your doctor, and making some lifestyle changes. Let’s look at some ways you can do that for three common illnesses:
On April 5, 2021 the federal government is expected to mandate immediate patient access to their electronic clinical notes. Many medical systems are already releasing these notes to your electronic healthcare portal in preparation for this mandate. As a result, at no cost, you will have access to these records:
Given the COVID-19 pandemic and surge in hospitalizations, patients having surgery are largely not permitted to have anyone accompany them. This means that your personal (family member, friend) or professional advocate won’t be able to be with you in person. But the good news is that she can still advocate for you if you bring her into the room by phone or video. For ideas on how to virtually connect with your advocate, see my post, How to Create Long-Distance Advocate Partnerships.
You would like to hire an advocate. You’ve followed my tips on How to Choose an Advocate, but the advocate you want to hire isn’t in your area. Do you need to keep searching? Not necessarily.
You need a patient advocate, but you’re not sure how to find the one that’s right for you. Here are four tips to help you through the search and selection process.
When you decide to see a doctor, you have a good idea of what they will do for you. But what if someone suggests you hire a patient advocate? Would you know what that person could do? Or for that matter, how you’d even go about finding one?
For a moment, I would like you to imagine yourself in the following situation.
You are in the exam room for your diabetic check-up, expecting to see a familiar face. But instead of your primary care physician, a stranger walks in. This individual is not a physician but is a nurse practitioner (NP). Do you know the difference between the two?
The recent death of 43 year-old actor Chadwick Boseman is raising much needed awareness about the rise rates of colon cancer among young adults.
Flu season is just around the corner. Influenza or "the flu" is a contagious upper-respiratory illness that can cause severe illness, and at times, lead to death. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) estimate that during the 2018-2019 flu season, the flu was associated with 490,600 hospitalizations and 34,200 deaths. Symptoms include fever, chills, cough, congestion, headaches, fatigue, and muscle aches.
Don’t expect the number of cases in the U.S. to be lower this year because countries in the Southern Hemisphere, like Australia and New Zealand, experienced a very mild flu season . Their flu season happened at the same time their citizens were abiding by very strict stay-at-home orders due to COVID-19. Since the U.S. is not enforcing similar regulations, experts in the U.S. do not expect a similar decrease in the number of flu cases.
If anything, because Americans are also at risk of contracting COVID-19, this flu season presents a greater-than-normal risk to your health. That means getting a flu shot is more important than ever. Stacy Schultz-Cherry, a researcher at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital explains it this way , “We really don’t know what a co-infection would look like.” Schultz-Cherry adds, “I wouldn’t want to have the lungs that would find that out.” You don’t want those lungs either.