​Meeting Up

  • To make the best of your appointments, always schedule face-to-face meetings. Make sure you have enough time to ask questions. You can also leave your phone number and ask them to call you back to confirm a time to meet.
  • When you meet the professional, take a friend or family member with you for support. They can help you to remember instructions and take note of information - or even ask difficult questions if you feel uncomfortable doing so.
  • Prepare for your visits as much as you can, to avoid stress and confusion.

On the Same Team

  • Don't be intimidated by the professional. You are all working together to take care of your loved one.
  • Everyone needs to cooperate and there should be mutual respect and understanding. When you get frustrated or upset about what is happening, try to explain what you are feeling calmly. Remember: Your care professional is trying to help.
  • You do not have to agree with everything the professional says or suggests. You have the right to ask questions and clarify your doubts.
  • It helps to prevent miscommunication and confusion if someone in your family is made the main contact person to talk to the care professionals.

​Checklist: Before a Doctor's Visit

  • Gather your questions.
  • Record the symptoms that your care recipient is feeling, such as if he/ she is getting better or worse.
  • Check that your case file has all your care recipient's medical information.
  • Call to confirm the appointment.
  • Make sure you have some free time before and after the appointment so that you do not need to rush.
  • Plan carefully so that you do not have to take young children along to avoid unnecessary stress and distraction.
  • Take a deep breath and calm your mind before you enter the venue.

Checklist: During a Doctor's Visit

  • Ask the most important questions first and the least important questions last. If you run out of time, you would have gotten answers to your most important question.
  • Be positive and confident.
  • Describe symptoms accurately.
  • Allow your care recipient to express his/ her complaints and concerns and involve him/ her in your discussion.
  • Help your loved one to communicate clearly.
  • Ask relevant questions, such as warning/ emergency signs to look out for, if your care recipient can stay at home alone, the side-effect of the medication, whether you need to talk to a medical social worker or occupational therapist, etc.
  • Be specific about your questions. Instead of asking "Can people normally exercise with this disease?", ask "At my mother's age, with her condition, will she still be able to go for her daily walks?"
  • Write down the doctor's instructions.
  • Discuss what your doctor suggests.
  • Ask when you do not understand something. Do not worry if you cannot speak very well. Take your time to ask questions.
  • Write notes when your healthcare professional is speaking, so that you do not forget.

Checklist: After a Doctor's Visit

  • Review your notes.
  • Check all medicine prescriptions.
  • Discuss the visit with your loved one and family, informing them about the main points and issues.
  • Update your calendar with the next appointment.
  • Update your case file.
  • Keep all records and test results safely in one place for easy access.

Starting a Case File

  • Organise all important information about your care recipient into a case file in the form of a folder or file. This way, you will have all the necessary information in a convenient location that you can grab and go, in case of emergencies.
  • The case file should contain:
    • Your care recipient's profile
    • Your care recipient's medical history
    • All medical appointment cards
    • All medical records and test results​

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