Medical Needs Overseas: Carry meds record

This item appears on page 35 of the September 2011 issue.

Recently, I visited one of my doctors and was asked to update the list of all medications that I currently take. This information was entered into the PPO’s (preferred provider organization’s) databank of reports that each of my doctors consult in their management of my case. (All of my doctors belong to the same PPO.)

I asked for, and was given, a copy of the updated list, which shows the medications by prescription name, dosage instructions, etc., and the name of the medical provider. (My wife received a copy of her medications too.)

I added to this list the names of meds to which I am allergic (i.e., penicillin) plus a phone number for each doctor.

We are planning for a trip to Europe, and I’ll put a copy of this data along with copies of our passports and any other identification data in every suitcase, in case a need arises.

This type of list should be fairly easily obtainable from anyone’s medical provider. Each traveler has to request his own copy, due to confidentiality laws.

By the way, when I went to the hospital recently for a surgery, it was comforting to have my meds printout with me, as I was challenged by medical staff as to my allergies plus what, why and when I took the meds I had indicated as current.

Yorba Linda, CA