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2014 Simple Personal Health Tips by Karen Maher

Written By Editor on 1/3/14 | 1/3/14

Editors note: Ms. Maher submitted the following article, offering a variety of simple personal health tips for the New Year, and the Schoharie News is pleased to publish her commonsensical approach to medical wellbeing.  
2014 is marking healthcare as the year that, your personal healthcare is your business now more than ever. Personal health means engaging and increasing the interactivity in your personal health condition, medical condition, immunizations, pharmaceutical history, especially if you travel away from home any distance. Here are a few tips for an adult (21ys +), that you may need this year:
  • Do your 2014 insurance benefits meet your personal healthcare needs? Make a short list of your needs to address with your primary care for possible solutions.
  • Invest time in your health maintenance and keep documentation in a date and time format of your process. This information can be shared with your primary care and insurance if you need new prescriptions, labs or images.
  • Know your personal health history like you know how much money you have in the bank. Personal history includes acute and chronic illness. Clinics and Hospitals do not have to keep records longer than 6 years according to the NYSDOH (New York State Department of Health), depending on the medical facility and the state you live. Know where your records are and how long they will be kept, in hard copy and/ or maintained electronically.
  • Don’t assume standard of insurance coverage remains the same in 2014. Become proactive, question your physician diagnosis, question the drugs prescribed, as well as your deductibles and what insurance will pay, document your history carefully and review any documents healthcare facilities and insurance company will send to you. If you are in the Exchange, learn what this means in detail, take charge of your healthcare!
  • If you commute or travel ask about immunizations and safety, this information can change annually. For example, in case of an emergency will telemedicine be covered by your insurance?
  • In an emergency, know your personal health history, prescription and vitamin intake; and allergies, have your facts in order to receive the care you expect during any emergency or scheduled routine care.
  • Carry a contact name and phone number and your insurance card in case of an emergency. Have a living will in place with a medical facility and with your contact (preferably a loved one or family member).

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