Overseeing a Sick Family Member’s Medical Documents in Ft. Myers: What You Need to Know
When a family member reaches old age or is dealing with other health issues, it’s common for them to need help with medical documents.
Here’s what you need to know about overseeing a family member’s medical documents in Ft. Myers, Florida.
Medical documents are private, and they are protected by several legal safeguards. When you have a sick family member who can’t handle their own medical documents, you need to first get through privacy protections and be granted access to medical documents.
Three forms of legal documentation you may need are:
- HIPAA authorizations
- Medical power of attorney (POA)
- Advance care directives
Successfully completing and submitting these forms will grant you access to private medical documents. With this access often comes decision-making power when your relative can’t make informed medical decisions alone.
A sick family member is likely to have medical documents and instructions from a variety of doctors, specialists, and caregivers. Medical records should be kept organized for easy reference.
When helping a sick family member with medical records, you may need to keep many papers on hand, including the following:
- Personal and family health histories
- List of current medications and instructions
- List of current doctors and contact info
- Doctor visit summaries
- Test results
- Insurance forms
- Medical bills
- Legal documents
A serious illness usually involves many doctor visits, medications, and insurance claims. Handling multiple documents from different sources can get overwhelming, so staying organized is key to success.
Good organization can help you properly inform medical professionals about your family member’s needs. It can also help ensure medication instructions are followed, refills are picked up promptly, and no appointments or exams are missed.
Keeping Documents Secure
Medical documents are confidential for a reason. When you assume the care of a family member’s medical documents, you also take responsibility for their privacy.
Confidential information like a Social Security number is often attached to medical documents. If you know that documents are no longer needed, you’re responsible for protecting your relative’s privacy and security by properly destroying and disposing of any documents with sensitive personal information.
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