For two years, she had been trying — and failing — to get away
from the violence and abuse. She worried not only about her own
safety, but also the safety of her three young children. She
wanted a divorce. She wanted custody.
Did You Know: 3 out of 4 people don’t take their medicine as
When you learn that you have a long-term health problem, one of
the most important ways you can manage your condition is by
taking your medicine as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or
other health care professional. This is also known as medication
Many people never fill their prescriptions, or they may never
pick up their filled prescriptions from the pharmacy. Other
people bring their medication home, but don’t follow their health
care professional’s instructions – they skip doses or stop taking
the medicine, or they take more than instructed or at the wrong
time of day.
Not taking your medicine as directed can be bad for your health –
it can make it harder to breathe or do everyday things. It can
rob you of a long and full life. Not taking your medicine as
directed can also lead to other health problems, especially if
you already have asthma, diabetes, or high blood pressure.
To me, the strangest thing about my son’s college health forms
was that they did not require my signature.
From a medical point of view, an 18-year-old is a legal adult.
Yes, parents may offer up pithy remarks about who is actually an
adult, and in what sense, and who pays the bills. But when
children head off to college, responsibility for their health
unmistakably shifts. They must take care of themselves, in every
sense, and now is the time to talk about how.
You receive a phone message that, because of the recent Supreme
Court decision to uphold the Affordable Health Care Act, you have
an opportunity to get health care at substantially discounted
rates. You call the 800-number, and the salesperson offers
“superior” health insurance at “group” rates with savings of 50
percent or more.
However, be aware of several scams that boast a special affinity
to this federal act.
Celebrate the spirit of Independence Day by taking
charge of your health
SACRAMENTO – July 1, 2011 – California consumers have healthcare
rights that they may not be aware of, according to Californians
for Patient Care, an independent nonprofit and patient advocate
that connects consumers to affordable care. Exercising these
rights may give patients greater control over their healthcare
experiences and even improve their health.
Congratulations on taking charge of your health! Californians for
Patient Care has some tips for you to help make the most of your
Before your appointment:
Call the facility where you are scheduled to be seen. Ask them:
What type of identification will they need? IMPORTANT NOTE: Showing your ID is important for your
health and safety and is critical to ensuring that you get
treatment, medications and/or tests that are meant for you, not
for someone else. Failing to show your proper ID jeopardizes
your personal/patient safety and could put you at risk of
immeasurable harm, as severe injury or even death may
Is proof of income required? If so, what type of
documentation do they require? (see below for examples)*
Ask Me 3™ is a patient education program created by
the National Patient Safety
Foundation® to help promote discussions between you and
your healthcare providers to ultimately improve your health
outcomes. Here are a few simple questions you should
ask your healthcare professional at your next visit.
What is my main problem?
What do I need to do?
Why is it important for me to do this?
And now that you have asked the questions, it is important for
you to continue the discussion so that you have a good
understanding of the answers to your questions.
We invite you to click on the links below for more detail and
additional helpful tips to help you take charge of your health.
Look for doctors and office staff who speak your family’s
language, or ask for an interpreter if you need one to talk to
your doctor or your child’s doctor. Certified medical
interpreters are trained to translate health information
correctly. They must keep your information private.
Today, on National Healthcare Decisions Day, authors Kate
O’Malley of the California HealthCare Foundation and Nancy
Zweibel of the Retirement Research Foundation, discuss how
foundation efforts have contributed to the adoption and expansion
of a standard paradigm for end-of-life planning.
On Monday [April 1, 2013], a new state law took effect that
requires physicians to notify women if they have dense breast
tissue, which could be associated with a higher risk of breast
cancer, KQED’s “State of Health” reports (Aliferis, “State of
Health,” KQED, 3/29).
About the New Law
In September 2012, Gov. Jerry Brown (D) signed into law a bill
(SB 1538) — by former Sen.Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) — that
requires that women who receive mammograms be informed if they
have dense breast tissue.
The law also requires that those women be informed about how the
density of their breast tissue can affect mammogram results and
cancer risk (California Healthline, 9/24/12).
WASHINGTON (AP) — Michael Lee knew he was still in bad shape when
he left the hospital five days after emergency heart surgery. But
he was so eager to escape the constant prodding and the
roommate’s loud TV that he tuned out the nurses’ care
“I was really tired of Jerry Springer,” the New York man says
ruefully. “I was so anxious to get out that it sort of overrode
everything else that was going on around me.”
Effective June 27, 2010, all California doctors are required to
notify their patients that they are licensed by the Medical Board
of California and provide the Medical Board’s contact
information. This notice may either be prominently posted in the
doctor’s office, or it may be in the form of a written statement
that is given to the patient. The written notification must
include the Medical Board of California’s telephone number and
Web site. Consumers can contact the Medical Board to check on a
doctor’s license status or to file a complaint.
To avoid a relapse of your condition or readmission to the
hospital, it is important that you understand the directions your
doctor or other healthcare provider is giving you. There are
steps you can take to improve your recovery once you leave your
healthcare providers office. To ensure that you understand the
directions, we suggest:
• Asking your care provider to use plain language rather than
medical jargon. Don’t know what a myocardio infarction is?
Research the hospital your doctor recommends and the procedure
you’re set to have. Check Medicare’s Hospital Compare website
for information about medical centers’ performance. Some states
publish hospital report cards, another source worth checking.
Ask your doctor how many procedures of this kind she’s done, what
results she usually achieves and how often potential
complications occur (for instance, how often do people having hip
replacements get infections?).
Patients desire granular privacy control over their electronic
health information, according to research published online Nov.
26 by the Journal of the American Medical Informatics
“One barrier that has been identified in the acceptance of health
technologies such as EHRs is concern about privacy and security,”
wrote lead author Kelly Caine, PhD, an assistant professor in the
school of computing at Clemson University in Clemson, S.C. “The
introduction of IT into a system is widely understood to
fundamentally change the nature of individual privacy because it
enables collection and storage of data on a scale not possible
using non-electronic methods.”
Holiday gatherings can be a good chance to have a conversation
and gather information about your family’s health history, which
is key to healthcare. The U.S. Surgeon General operates a free
Web site — https://familyhistory.hhs.gov
— that helps people create a family health history and share it
electronically with relatives and their doctor.