Maryland’s Health Matters - Upper Chesapeake - Fall 2017 - 5

10

Things You Need
to Know About
Your Aging Parents

If you have aging parents, here's
a handy list to make sure you have
necessary information should an
emergency arise:

3. Insurance information

drugs or materials, such

Know the names of your

as latex, can be lifesaving.

parents' insurance providers
and their policy numbers to

6. Lifestyle and habits

coordinate additional care

Know the specifics of your

after surgery or hospitaliza-

parents' tobacco and alcohol

tion. This also will help you

use, exercise habits and diet.

file claims on their behalf,

These details (and changes

if needed.

in their habits) give doctors a better picture of their

4. Medical histories

overall health.

Keep a list of medical conditions, past surgeries and

7. Privacy information

1. Contact information
for health care providers

2. Current medications

major medical procedures.

Find out whether your par-

Having a list of current

The doctor will use informa-

ents have signed a form that

Keep the names and phone

medications helps

tion like this to make deci-

allows their doctors and insur-

numbers of doctors and

doctors avoid the risk of

sions about medical proce-

ance companies to release

specialists on hand. If either

adverse drug interactions.

dures and treatment options.

their medical information to

parent is hospitalized, the

Ask about prescriptions

primary care providers can

as well as over-the-counter

5. Known allergies

privacy agreements to allow

be contacted for detailed

medications, vitamins

Providing information to

you access in emergencies.

health histories.

and supplements.

doctors about allergies to

you. If not, ask them to sign

8. Contact information
for neighbors
Ask mom and dad for the
name and number of a
neighbor who could be called
on to check on them and
alert you if there's a problem.

9. Details of
advance directives
Get the details of your
parents' living wills and
who is authorized to make
health care decisions on their
behalf. Have this conversation now instead of during a
medical emergency.

10. Final wishes
It's a difficult conversation,
but the information is essential. Explain to your parents
that knowing their wishes
will help you advocate on
their behalf. 

† 
For information on free advance directives presentations at UM UCH, call 800-515-0044.

umuch.org | Fall 2017  5


http://www.umuch.org

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