Keeping Health Records for a Child With Autism

Keeping a Personal Health Record when your Child has Autism

Organizing your autistic child’s health record can help you, service providers, family and other caregivers to better support your child. This article will provide you with some items to consider when keeping health records for a child with autism.

Why paper?  Well, remember that question you wanted to ask the doctor when he pops in and you can’t find the test you want to show him? We will help you identify the key details to store to avoid that scenario.

 

Creating a Personal Health Record for your Autistic Child

Basic Profile

The basic profile will be the first page in the personal health record (PHR). Some items may include name, date of birth, place of birth, nickname, gender, address, phone(s), email, and a recent photo. You can even add a note that indicates “if found, please return to (insert address)”, postage paid.

Keeping health records for a child with autism needs to include how your child reacts and what is normal for them. If needed, add the method of communication (if non-verbal) such as sign language, picture boards, written word, etc. This will help others to better interact and care for your child.

Emergency Contacts

This is the second most important category to include in the PHR. Write the name, phone, and email of the top two or three emergency contacts. It is a good idea to put an “other” category at the bottom if you need to add anything.

Medication List

Keeping health records for a child with autism, must include supplements. Many children with autism will have a number of supplements to assist them. Physicians often treat supplements like medications – so having it documented is a great help. Often remembering supplements’ names and doses is much more difficult than medications. Medications can change very frequently, so having a master list can be very helpful. It is nice to have the pharmacy name, address, and phone number on the top of the medication list. We have seen parents take photos of the medication bottles and the medication itself for a quick and easy reference.

Doctor Contact Information

It is helpful to have all health professional information all in one place. A health records for a child with autism, includes much more than just the pediatrician. We know of some parents that keep a business card sheet in a binder and just put the doctors, nurses, and other specialists business cards right in the binder to eliminate the time it takes to write the details down.

Tests and Procedures

This is one of the categories that is often could cost you money if you don’t keep track. Keeping health records for a child with autism must include behaviors, treatments, therapies, and educational experiences and is sometimes overlooked but necessary.  Log the type, the date, the name of the ordering physician, the address, phone, and fax information can be helpful. If you have a copy you don’t have to wait the sometimes 30 day waiting period when another doctor requests to see them.

Insurance Information

The first thing it seems like the hospital or doctor office asked us when we arrive is for our insurance card. Once in awhile we forget the card and they are not exactly happy about it.
You can make a copy of your cards, health insurance, dental insurance, vision insurance, medication coverage, and/or medicare to make it quick and easy.

Medical History of Your Child

Keeping records for a child with autism with quick details at a glance can be a big help, especially if other family or caregivers are helping to get to appointments. Important details to consider documenting are their name, date of birth, gender, and blood type.
Other items to include here are: Has your child been out of the US in the last 5 years? Have they ever been pregnant? What are their allergies, medications, supplements, surgeries. major injuries, and any other major items to consider?

Family Medical History

Having details about your child’s biological parents, siblings, and grandparents can also be helpful when filling out the never-ending family medical history forms. Also include the condition and the date they were diagnosed if possible.
Additional tip: Often you are asked to fill out a medical history form that includes a ton of check boxes with various diagnoses on it. You can ask them for a copy of the form, fill it out, and keep it with you to make filling the forms out the next time quick and easy.

Calendar

While you will most likely have your appointments in your electronic calendar, it is nice to have a record of all the appointments that are related to medical care. You may want to include information like their last IEP, speech screening, hearing follow-up, and/or behavior evaluation.

Journal

Keeping health records for a child with autism can be tedious at times and many parents underestimate the impact long term caregiving can have on their own well being. Having a journal as part of the PHR can help you keep track of how you are doing. You can document how you are feeling and/or what concerns you have for either your child or yourself.

Wrapping it up

We hope this was helpful in providing ideas for you in keeping health records for a child with autism. While the above items listed are the most important, there are some other supplemental items that may be useful.

If you want to learn more, we have a full course available for our readers that walks you through in depth & step-by-step. We have included some awesome bonuses to help you as well.

You can find out more here

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Wrapping it up
We hope this was helpful in providing ideas for you in keeping health records for a child with autism. While the above items listed are the most important, there are some other supplemental items that may be useful.

If you want to learn more, we have a full course available for our readers that walks you through in depth & step-by-step. We have included some awesome bonuses to help you as well. Just go here for your download and do not miss the #1 thing you need to do!