Good article telling about a patient with cancer having to relive the entire ordeal with each physician she meets with. BD
She has never liked talking about the cancer in her body. Talking about it is a reminder of the ugly turns in her life.
But in the years since Judy Fulton's battle began, she has discovered that there's something a lot worse than talking about her medical history, and it is this:
Since her breast cancer diagnosis in 2002, Judy Fulton, 67, has had to tell her story to nearly a dozen different physicians. She says she favors electronic medical records because they take the burden off the patient and make the system work more efficiently.
That may not seem all that troublesome. Filling out forms at the beginning of each doctor's appointment is for many just a necessary nuisance.
But for patients with chronic and acute diseases like Fulton, where the number of doctors you see can grow into the double digits, accurately relating a medical history is more than a nuisance. It can mean the difference between life and death.
Fulton knew she had a long fight ahead of her. To make life a little easier, she decided to transfer from her doctor in Atlanta to one closer to home.
She requested that her medical records be transferred to Kennestone, but doctors couldn't. She would have to do it. She went to Kinko's and made five copies of everything in her file.
She hoped this would be enough for the doctors she'd have to see in coming months. It wasn't. Each time she saw a new doctor, she had to fill out another medical history, from diagnosis to treatments to medications and her reactions to them.
"You tell your story over and over and over," she said.
"Any technological advances will be a gift to any patient," she said. "This isn't about the care, it's about the process."