Adult Children Caring for Parents and Avoiding Medical Errors

by Kathleen on February 12, 2013

Recently, published the following article in their newsletter:

Children caring for parents often assist in keeping track of their parent’s health records. This can be a daunting task as many seniors see multiple physicians who may prescribe several medications for a variety of conditions. Keeping good medication and medical records can help prevent dangerous medical and medication errors.

Those assisting seniors can help them keep an updated medication list (including over the counter medications) on a computer or in a notebook. An updated list makes it easier for everyone since the first question most doctors ask for is the patient’s list of medications and any changes since they were last seen.

Even if they are not available for every appointment, the caregiver can ask about any changes and update and print this list for their parent. Expiration of prescriptions might also be followed to avoid trying to get a renewal for a much needed prescription. 

Another good record those providing parent care will want to keep is a good medical history that includes conditions, past surgeries, hospitalizations, doctor names, numbers and emergency contact information. These types of lists are vital for emergency visits as well.

They can take these lists to every Dr.’s appointment along with a list of any other issues they or their family may want to address. These simple steps empower the medical professionals providing geriatric care, those caring for their parents and most importantly the seniors themselves.

I personally found when mom was alive, that it was essential to have accurate records readily available. One never knows when you might end up in an emergency room with a parent and it becomes even more crucial then—since the medical team helping your parent most likely knows nothing about their medical history at all.

The last thing you want is some counter-indicative medication to be prescribed that will work against the meds already being taken.

There are many online services where you can input your parents’ medication schedule and set up reminders for them as well as print out their full schedule to take to all doctor appointments, etc.

Some of the services you can check out include:

  • – uses light and sound to indicate if a pill bottle has already been opened or if it is time to take a pill

A simple Google search will give you lots of options to help with this very important issue.

Kathleen Cleary is a Caregiver Coach and Consultant helping Professional Women find the answers they need to continue living their best life while caring for aging parents. As a Certified Senior Advisor, she offers Seniors and their adult children customized plans of care as well as resources and information to help them navigate the challenges of aging.

Skype: kathleen.cleary12


For a free 20 minute consultation: click here

If you are feeling stressed and overwhelmed … or confused and afraid of the journey ahead, I can help! Let’s chat.

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{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Donna Brooten March 20, 2013 at 1:47 pm

Just wanted to thank you for mentioning us–and tell you that I put your recent blog/story on our MyMedSchedule FaceBook site. Maybe it will generate some business for you.

ps–we met in East Haven, CT back in November 2011 at the caregiver conference.


Kathleen March 21, 2013 at 2:01 pm

Hi Donna! I remember meeting you. Very glad to reconnect. I appreciate your support and collaboration. Kathleen


Yvonne July 18, 2014 at 4:29 pm

I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the mymedschedule website!!! I care for my son, father, and sister using this web site. It is awesome!! Plus I have the mobile app as well. I have received great and many compliments from all the doctors about the wallet medicine schedule I print and take to every appointment. A lot of doctors and nurses have asked about the web site!
I would be VERY lost without !!


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