Healthcare Team Communication - A Parent/Caregiver Perspective

You'd think that when your child or loved one has a family doctor, neurologist, and specialist that they would communicate with each other. I recently learned that's not always the case. As a parent and caregiver to my daughter with epilepsy, I want to say that whether you have a chronic illness, epilepsy, or another invisible illness it's up to you to keep on top of this.

My voice has become louder

I will explain. Our family doctor recently retired. We had him since 2009 and it's now 2024. I recently spoke to our new family doctor in regards to a health issue my daughter is dealing with. During the conversation, I mentioned my daughter neurologist only to find out that the family doctor did not receive any new info from our neurologist in a long time. That concerned me. Now I must play telephone tag in hopes that faxes will be sent between the two professionals, so that my daughter gets the proper care for her specific individual health care needs and all health files will be updated.

My recommendations

I know you already have a lot going on, and how dare I even suggest adding one more thing to your already overwhelming life. When I say I know what you're dealing with, I really do understand. It's like playing a parent game of Whack-a-Mole (always try to stay a step ahead; be ready for what may pop up.) It can be frustrating at first, but you'll be glad you did!

Neither doctor, neurologist, nor specialist can put a plan in place if they don't communicate. Here are some things I found to be helpful:

  • Call your family doctor to make sure they have updated info from neurologist or specialist
  • Call your neurologist or specialist to make sure they have current contact and health info from family doctor
  • Call your pharmacy to make sure all current contact info of doctor, specialist, and neurologist is up to date
  • Bring it up every time you talk and keep the lines of communication open

I hope this content helps you and your loved one on the journey.

Signed Lorrie
writer, blogger, parent, health leader, and advocate

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