Organize Your Health

Your health history shouldn’t be lost in the clutter. Get a handle on your family’s records with these simple tips:

Create a file for each person with name, Social Security number, birth date, and contact details, then make sure designated relatives know where and how to access hard copies and digital copies (consider an external hard drive, flash drive, or online servers like Google Health or Mayo Clinic’s Health Manager, which securely archive your medical information for free)

Keep records of all vaccinations, including those for travel abroad; be sure to note any illness you’ve had (like chicken pox) which negates the need for shots

Document your dental and vision histories, including surgeries, orthodontic care, and lens prescriptions

Record all surgeries, childbirths, hospital stays, serious injuries or sicknesses, and major tests, including results

List known allergies as well as dates and treatments for past allergic reactions

Detail current and past prescriptions

Include insurance information and advance directives like living wills or organ donation

Prepare a contact list for all physicians, pharmacists, and other providers

Insert reminders into your calendar to schedule recommended screenings (many online programs provide email notifications as well).

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