At UnityPoint Health - Trinity Regional Medical Center, we want you to be involved in your care. We want to be sure you are getting the right treatment and medication from your health care provider.
Make sure you are receiving proper treatment:
- Feel free to ask about your safety.
- Look for the health care provider's name badge. They should introduce themselves.
- Health care providers should clean their hands with soap and water or a waterless hand sanitizer. If you think the health care provider has not cleaned their hands, ask them to do so.
- If your normal medication has not been received on time, tell your health care provider.
- Your health care provider will identify you by checking your wristband before giving you any medication or treatment.
Learn as much as you can about your diagnosis, your medical test and your treatment plan:
- Check with your doctors about their training, experience, and qualifications.
- Get information about your condition from your doctor, the library, websites, and support groups.
- Write down important things your doctor tells you about your condition. Ask for written information you can keep.
- Read all medical forms carefully to make sure you understand them before signing. Ask for explanations if you do not understand.
- Learn about the safe operation of any equipment used in your care.
- Write down any questions you or your family has for the nurse or doctor.
Select a trusted family member or a friend to be your patient representative:
- Your patient representative can ask questions and speak up for you if you cannot.
- Your patient representative can stay overnight and can help you make decisions about your care.
- Your patient representative should understand your wishes concerning resuscitation and life support.
- Make sure your patient representative understands the consent(s) you have signed.
- Your patient representative should know your home care instructions and how to tell if your condition is getting worse and who to call.
Know exactly what medications you are taking and why you are taking them:
- Ask your health care provider for written information about prescribed medications.
- If you or your patient representative does not recognize a medication, make sure it is for you.
- Ask your nurse how long your IV bag should take to empty. Let the nurse know if you feel it is dripping too fast or too slow.
- Always tell the doctor and nurse about your allergies and bad reactions you have to medications.
- Ask your doctor or pharmacist if it is safe to take several medications together, including vitamins, herbal supplements and over-the-counter drugs.
Take part in your plan of care:
- Keep copies of your medical records and share them with the health care team to give them a more complete history of your health.
- You and your doctor should agree on your care.
- Know who will care for you, how long the treatment will last and how you should feel.
- Never be afraid to ask for a second opinion. If you are not sure about your condition or treatment, ask to see and additional specialist.