When you have chronic health issues, the occasional trip to the hospital is almost inevitable. A little pre-planning can make your hospital visit go much more smoothly and improve your comfort. Knowing how to prevent yourself from being victimized by a medical provider’s inexperience or negligence is also very important.
Packing your go-bag and prepping for a hospital visit
In case you have an acute emergency, having a go-bag ready with all of the essentials you will need for a hospital stay can be very useful. In addition to a change of clothing, some toiletries and a spare phone charger, here are some things that can help prevent dangerous mistakes by those who will be caring for you:
- A complete list of your medications and dosages: If possible, keep several copies in your bag so you can hand it over to your nurse or doctor without having to struggle to remember everything when you’re in crisis.
- A medical history and your doctor’s contact information: If you have a complex medical history, you don’t want to risk that anything could be lost, misunderstood, or confused. A typed list that shows your conditions and gives the contact information for your usual medical providers is important.
- A list of your drug allergies: Having a written list ready to hand over could save your life. You cannot assume that the hospital records are correct or complete (even if you’ve been there before).
- A small supply of your critical medications: If you take a specific, hard-to-find medication, don’t assume the hospital will have it. Carrying some with you can be vital to your health.
Your go-bag can also make it easy to pack up any discharge papers and prescriptions that you bring home.
When all your efforts at self-protection fail
Sometimes, no matter what you do, a medical provider will fail to listen or exercise good judgment. When that happens, you have every right to pursue compensation for your injuries and losses. Speaking with a medical malpractice attorney as soon as possible is wise.