By Alan Lyndon
It’s not easy being a patient. Insurance companies and health care laws make it really difficult to know all of the rules about where to go for which procedure or ailment; how much it will cost; should I get that thing removed or will I be penalized; etc.
Lost in many discussions is the actual health of the patient. With that in mind, the Centers for Disease Control started a campaign called Get Smart for Healthcare to encourage patients to be more active their own care and become knowledgeable about things like proper use of antibiotics.
Patients play a critical role in their own care, according to Dr. Arjun Srinivasan, head of the CDC’s Get Smart program. “I encourage my patients to be advocates for their own health,” says Dr. Srinivasan.
The CDC released a video outlining the following five tips to help patients get the best care for themselves:
1. Clean hands save lives.
2. Be alert to changes in your health.
3. Only take antibiotics when your doctor says you need them.
4. Get a flu shot every year.
5. Speak up; ask questions about your care.