News from Northwest ADA Center – Idaho
Preparing for Hospitalization During COVID-19
It is NOT business as usual at your local hospital. If you require medical care – be prepared! It’s up to you and your advocates to protect your quality of life.
Pack a “Grab & Go” Bag: Make a list of what you want with you in the hospital and put those in a bag ready to go. You need to do this NOW, while you are sharp, thinking clearly, and not fatigued.
Checklist of Items: Attach to you body, around your neck, wrist, or ankle, a plastic bag that contains the following items. Keep this bag with you at all times. Things easily get lost, go missing, or are taken away by well meaning healthcare staff. So if you are alone, without an attendant:
-Hard copies of important documentation. Health insurance cards, state ID, medications, list of allergies, communication needs, medical providers contact info. Print this form and fill out.
-Hard copies of your advanced directives, power of attorney.
-Your emergency contact list in priority order. Include phone numbers and email addresses.
-Identify who speaks for you if you cannot speak or communicate with staff.
-Bring signage you want in your room. Think what you want people coming into your room to know about you. Examples: Hard of hearing/hearing impaired – please use communication board. Blind – please introduce yourself and tell me what you are doing.
-Communication tools you prefer. Samples available here. If it’s hard to point use “partner-assisted scanning. Nod or blink yes as the assistant points to each row and asks “Is it in this row?” Proceed the same way pointing to each message. Confirm and repeat.
-Your cellphone AND charger in ziplock bag.
-Your medications. Understand you may not be able to use them if the hospital determines they need to prescribe for you while under their care.
–Use a permanent marker to write key information on your tummy, chest or arm. For example: Diabetic, Blind. Paraplegic, Rheumatoid Arthritis, cannot breath on my stomach, etc.
-Call the hospital you normally use and find out their policy about bringing your attendant or family member. It’s possible due to infection rules, this will not be allowable.
Another resource is asking to see the Chaplain. They can help you with contacting family and may be an advocate for you.
For more information about the ADA contact:
Dana Gover, MPA, and ACTCP Certification, ADA Training and Technical Assistance Coordinator
For more information about ADA Technical Assistance visit the NW ADA Center Idaho website: nwadacenter.org/idaho
Phone: Voice and Text 208-841-9422
Idaho Relay Service: 7