Interactive health care tracker invaluable tool
In an emergency, medical personnel need all the diagnostic tools-including the patient’s medical history-they can find to help treat the patient quickly and properly to restore his health. Unfortunately, for a volunteer on a mission trip, those details generally have been left at home.
Not anymore, if Deresa Claybrook has anything to say about it. Claybrook is founder of Positive Resource in Moore, which offers community based education seminars as part of its mission to provide effective management of health care information needed to provide quality health care to the public.
A health information technician for 25 years, Claybrook has developed what she calls the Interactive Health Care Tracker (IHCT), a 32 MB flash drive that connects to any computer via a standard USB port.
“Knowing how to track your health care information is a valuable resource to you, your family, and the doctors, nurses and other health care professionals who provide your treatment and care,” said Claybrook, who attends Del City, First Southern. “But, did you know that, in most cases, a complete record of all your health care information can’t be found in any single location or consistent format?
“The various elements of any one person’s health information are likely scattered across several health care providers, and are kept in various combinations of paper-based and electronic record keeping formats. Each one of your health care providers compiles a separate medical record on you, and these multiple medical records can lead to an incomplete story about your health care.
“An Interactive Health Care Tracker can help reduce or eliminate duplicate tests and allow you to receive faster, safer treatment and care in an emergency.”
The IHCT contains .pdf forms the user easily can fill out, including an authorization for the release of medical information; personal information, including emergency contacts; physician information; insurance information; medication list; logs for medication, blood pressure and insulin; record of doctor visits; history of hospitalizations and surgeries; lab, imaging and medical devices, such as a pacemaker, insulin pump or breathing device; personal and family medical history and a physical and occupational therapy log.
Paul Bettis, Baptist General Convention of Oklahoma chaplaincy specialist, recently gave IHCTs to some of his chaplains to try out, and he was pleased with the results.
“I think that it has proved to be very helpful. All you have to do is fill in the blanks,” Bettis said. “Fortunately, we have not had to use it yet in an emergency, and hopefully, we will not have to, but the information is there if we need it.”
Bettis said the beauty of the product is found in its simplicity.
“You just fill in the blanks and then if anything does happen, someone can take it to a computer and download the information they need to help treat the individual. It’s all at their fingertips.”
Bettis said being able to carry their medical history with them is a huge benefit to the chaplains, and for anyone else who might go on a mission trip, for that matter.
“Whether my chaplains are working out of state as they do many times, or if they are in a disaster area; no matter where they go, the information is there with them,” he said. “There’s no paperwork. You can put it right around your neck. All of my chaplains wear a lanyard with an ID badge. They can put this on their lanyard and carry it with them wherever they go. Portability is a real asset.”
He added that the IHCTs also provide comfort in another way.
“Peace of mind goes along with it, knowing that you have all of that information with you, especially if someone is a diabetic or something like that. Knowing that all of your information can be accessed quickly by a medical professional is comforting,” he said.
“It’s also good for the family of the chaplain who stays behind. It gives them some comfort to know this information is going with their loved one,” he added. “They also can rest assured that their contact information is included so they may be contacted quickly in the event of an emergency involving their loved one.
“I would recommend them to anyone. In fact, I have been recommending something like this in my training sessions for years. I even developed a rough version for my mother and put her medical information on it. But it didn’t have all of the forms this one has on it. They are very easy to work with.”
Additional information is available by calling Positive Resource at 405/703-1115, e-mail, firstname.lastname@example.org.