Creating Your Personal Medical Profile
By Laz Bouros
One of the really great communications tools that patients can use to inform their physicians about their condition is a Personal Medical Profile. It’s a one-page medical document that lists basic contact information as well as your medical information. Whether you have an appointment with your existing physician or a new doctor, take a printed copy of your medical profile with you and it instantly answers most of your physician’s questions. My standard approach is to take two copies of my appointment agenda, minutes of my last visit and an updated copy of my medical profile. Recently, I signed up for the MyChart application (see Online access to medical records) which allows me online access to my blood and other tests I have taken. I now review the blood tests to ensure that the results are within the range before my appointment and print off a copy to take with me. Any questions or concerns are added to the rest of my questions in my agenda. This streamlines the whole process and ensures that all important issues are discussed within the allotted time of the visit.
You can use a variety of software to create this profile. I use an MS Word Table (see below) and over the years, I have found it to be easy to update and maintain separate dated versions. I also keep an electronic copy of this profile on my cell phone just in case I don’t have a printed copy with me.