Using the 4ward Health Tracker

The 4ward Health Tracker, or 4HT for short, is an agenda sized health journal with the following sections:

1. Health Profile: A place to record the care recipient's health status and history as well as emergency contacts

2. Medications Section: You can either use this section to list your medications or, if keeping the list of medications provided by the pharmacist in the pocket at the back of the 4HT, use this section to keep track of medications that were discontinued. Sounds a little counter intuitive, but if the care recipient ends up in emergency, often emergency doctors will prescribe medications that the family doctor or specialist has stopped. Knowing why it was stopped, may help inform the emergency doctor. Just make sure you put DISCONTINUED in big lettering at the top of the medication page.

3. Quick Reference Tables: Use this section to keep track of all medical, hospital, and alternative medicine specialist visits. For example, if you are visiting a nutritionist, chiropractor or other specialist that is not part of the formal medical establishment, keep a list of these visits. This information can inform a medical practitioner about the care team, while helping you keep track of the visits for insurance purposes.

4. Visits: Use this section to record the next practitioner visit by creating a page when the appointment is made. Then leave the book open to that page so that you, the care recipient or the care team, can add questions to ask or notes to discuss with the medical practitioner at the appointment. In the visit notes section, if you are overwhelmed, get the physician to write down the course of action they want the care recipient to take, or have them read your notes that you've taken through the visit to verify you have documented the important information.

5. Symptoms: This section is for tracking symptoms and pain levels and is handy if the doctor has asked you to track specific behaviour for a defined period of time.

6. Weekly Perpetual Calendar: This section can be used to keep track of appointments, but it can also be used to track health goals and symptoms over time. For example, if a doctor has prescribed exercise, the weekly agenda can be used to record the exercises done each day. This allows the care recipient and doctor to see progress. It is also good to record how the care recipient is feeling after medication has been changed and to note differences in behaviour as over time you may be able to identify a pattern.

7. Contacts: This section is used to keep the name, telephone number and address of the practitioners who are part of the care team.

And last but not least, remember to bring this with the care recipient to all appointments and tuck it in with the care recipient if they are going to the hospital in an ambulance.

Don't hesitate to email me if you have questions or comments at jmkuntz@im4ward.com

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