Medical Needs On The Road

JanAndBill

Well-known member
A recent medical problem by some friends, on the road, and one that happened to me just before we were scheduled to leave, has left my DW and I questioning our plan to take longer trips. In our case we are currently in and out of home on a regular basis so follow up appointements with our regular physicians doesn't create a huge problem for us, and the access to medical records is there if we need it.

We can pretty much schedule around any appointments we have or need, but what about those who no longer have a home base. How do you deal with the need for a follow up with a primary physician or when you have prescriptions to be refilled. Our doctors require a visit of at least every 6 months and lab work, just to renew our prescriptions.

Thanks to Obama Care being forced on us, the whole medical care scene is changing. Many doctors are either not taking some forms of insurance or not taking new patients entirely. While I realize that you have the option of going to the ER in case of emergency or a "Doc-in-the-box" for non-emergency care, but what about those with long term care or after care needs? Any thoughts on this????
 

wdk450

Well-known member
Escapees club home park in Livingston, Texas has provisions for long term care there. Make sure you have a trip insurance that provides transportation home if you are hospitalized, along with transporting your rig and your spouse home. Good Sam has this. I know that this covers very little of what you asked about, but it is what I could contribute.

More and more medical groups are doing "Telemedicine" where you visit your doctor by e-mail or Skype, e-mail pictures of skin conditions and the like, and get routine blood work done locally and the results e-mailed to your doctor. The University Medical Center I retired from that serves a vast area of rural Northern California, pioneered this technology before internet was prevalent, using special high speed telephone/video connections of the time. This started in the early 1990's. It went as far as the hospital having one of those self-ambulatory robots that could go to an inpatient's bedside by itself and send a 2 way audio/video signal to the doctor (who was usually in his office on campus). I have seen a similar setup in another hospital system's central ICU monitoring facility in a separate freestanding building in Sacramento that provided monitoring and audio/video doctor consultations to about 5 ICU's in smaller hospitals in a 200 mile radius.

Probably the most widely used telemedicine function I know of is the reading of XRays for the ER's of smaller US hospitals at night by a group of US certified radiologists - IN AUSTRALIA. With the time zone differences, these radiology MDs are able to live lives with "normal" working hours for their family life, while providing hundreds of small hospitals in the U.S. the nighttime radiology interpretation coverage they must have. All you need is internet connections.
 

danemayer

Moderator
Staff member
We keep our medical histories with us in an emergency information envelope in the truck and have used them in several emergency medical situations. In the midst of a crisis it's pretty hard to remember allergies, prescriptions and dosages, vaccination history, surgical history. EMS and ER nurses and doctors have always thanks us.

I have an editable PDF form at this link. Save a copy on your computer. Make a copy with your name/initials and the date. Fill in the blanks and save. Print a copy or two. When something changes, you need only update the form.

The form is also pretty handy in non-emergency situations. When we go in for imaging, or the doctor's office asks us to fill out their 8 page form, we fill in the personal info on page 1 and give them our history form. Never had anyone object.

I know that you can buy a flashdrive/memory stick that does the same thing. But I'd be shocked if any hospital or doctor's office plugged an unknown device into their computers.
 

GrumpyOneandTwo

Well-known member
Wow danemayer...those are terrific. I saved them to my documents file and can fill them out at my leisure. Thanks for sharing. I hope anyone that doesn't have this type of info will see this post.....excellent!

Mike
 

JanAndBill

Well-known member
The state of Alabama was one of the first in the nation to offer the "Yellow Dot" program http://www.adeca.alabama.gov/Divisions/lets/TrafficSafety/Pages/YellowDot.aspx Being a Volunteer Fire & 1st Responder I've seen first hand how useful these packets are. We personally have one in each vehicle. In Alabama you can obtain the packets for free at most Sheriff's Offices. Since we implemented the program, several other states have offered it as well. I would contact the local Sheriffi's Office in your state for information on if it is available. If not you can go here http://nationalyellowdot.org/ there is nominal fee involved on $9.00.

Good information to know and follow, for those emergency cases, but my post had more to do with the mundane things like refilling prescriptions, and care for ongoing medical needs. Sadly, I'm not sure there are a lot of options anymore.
 

VKTalley

Well-known member
Good information to know and follow, for those emergency cases, but my post had more to do with the mundane things like refilling prescriptions, and care for ongoing medical needs. Sadly, I'm not sure there are a lot of options anymore.

Bill and Jan, Malcolm has a reoccurring prescription (Crestor) that we fill at Wal-Greens. They have it in their system and we can have it refilled no matter where we are. We just have to remind them NOT to put it on auto-refill.
 

JohnDar

Prolifically Gabby Member
For those vets that qualify for Tricare, you can get your Rx's filled in 90 day amounts via mail by ExpressScripts. If your spouse is on Tricare with you, same deal. Just another possibility. With Medicare A & B, with Tricare for Life, your coverage should follow you anywhere.
 

DocFather

Well-known member
I have a colleague who is a principal in an Online MD program. I was amazed to see medicine practiced over the internet. I am not going to give my feeling one way or another because I do not know enough but I know Dr. Durkes well. I emailed him and we will speak today or tomorrow. This may be an option.

Having said that. I have Humana Advantage and all my meds come mail-order through Right Source and each renewal or new Rx can have a different "ship to" address.
 
I put together a package of benefits that work pretty well for people on the road. It includes a no charge teledoc system available 24/7 with docs that can prescribe meds, a nationwide dental discount program through Aetna, a discount Rx program and that works at 50,000 pharmacies, a nationwide lab program, and a Coast to Coast Vision plan. Total cost is $9.99 per month for the entire family. The best part is that it works much better than I can explain. You enter your medical records on their secure data base and the doc looks at them while he's on the phone with you.

I am in the last couple of years in my insurance practice and developed this product to prop up the new high deductible plans. My clients really like it. As it turns out, I think it will turn into a nice little subsidy for me after I retire. It is not insurance, so doesn't require special licensing to sell in any state.
 

JanAndBill

Well-known member
Bill and Jan, Malcolm has a reoccurring prescription (Crestor) that we fill at Wal-Greens. They have it in their system and we can have it refilled no matter where we are. We just have to remind them NOT to put it on auto-refill.

Hey guys! Hope Malcom is on the road to recovery.

We use CVS which has the online pharmacy, that we can order and pickup at any store in the nation. They also have mail service if we need it. However, both of our doctors require a minimum office visit every 6 months to renew prescriptions and do lab work.

Any time you are admitted to the hospital, one of the first questions they ask is "who is your primary physician?". Granted you can get immediate care through the ER, but once released they tell you to "follow up with your primary physician". Around here "finding" a primary physician is getting harder to do, and many of them have now even stopped taking Medicare. I'm wondering if the need were to arise how difficult it would be to find a "primary physician" to treat you just on a temporary basis. My wife is on Medicare, but I still have a little over a year before I'm eligible. My Blue Cross/Blue Shield plan provides for out of state coverage but I get hit with all the out of network deductibles.

I know the newest thing in our area is "Concierge medicine", where you pay an annual fee for enhanced medical servces, which may be the way we all have to go in the future.
 

rumaco

US Army Retired (CW4)
WOW! Has this one hit home! We are full timers and are also workampers. I am a Vietnam veteran with high grade prostate cancer and congestive heart failure with and enlarged left ventrical. I have had a heart attack and many other problems associated with agent orange. The way we deal with this is we are first of all retired military so any hospital and specialist is covered under tricare standard. We stay in areas long enough to gain a primary care doctor and specialists that are associated with larger hospitals. We now are in Sequim WA taking care of an RV park and are in the care of Olympic Medical Center that is associated with Swedish Hospital in Seattle. Our doctors are all Swedish Hospital doctors but are in Sequim. Once my care (radiation) is completed we will travel with a lifeline to Swedish Hospital that can talk to the next doctors wherever we are!
 

pegmikef

Well-known member
For those vets that qualify for Tricare, you can get your Rx's filled in 90 day amounts via mail by ExpressScripts. If your spouse is on Tricare with you, same deal. Just another possibility. With Medicare A & B, with Tricare for Life, your coverage should follow you anywhere.

What John said, plus an added benefit of express scripts is they are a little more liberal than other outlets as to when you can refill your prescriptions which is handy if you are planning travel. You can renew them a month in advance which effectively gives you a four month supply.
 

TXBobcat

Fulltime
I have been full timing since 2007. I have a physical every November & December. I get my meds filled at that time through CVS Caremark mail order. When I need to refill my meds I go on line and have it sent to my Escapees mail address. When I get to a place I like I will say a week and have the Escapees to forward my mail (including the meds) to that campground. If I don't plan to stay a week. I make reservations at the campground and request my mail sent there a week before I am to arrive. I have had no problems with this. I have only had one case where I needed medical attention where I was admitted to a hospital in Corpus Christie TX. I made appointment with my Cardiologist in Garland TX and stayed a week to get checked out.

If you are in any city and you need medical assistance I would go to a Care Clinic which accepts anyone for small problems and will get you to a hospital if something serious is found. Don't worry about it. Hit the road and enjoy life. It is to short to wait around and worry. As for a USB drive or CD, forget it. I had one to give to the hospital in Corpus and they would not take it. Keep your DR's phone number handy and as many hardcopy medical records on hand as you can. I keep an envelope in the pocket behind my seat that has all of my records in it. I also have all of Trevor's records in the pocket behind the passenger seat. I also have an app on my iPhone that lists all of my meds and their dosages.

FWIW
BC
 

JohnDar

Prolifically Gabby Member
What John said, plus an added benefit of express scripts is they are a little more liberal than other outlets as to when you can refill your prescriptions which is handy if you are planning travel. You can renew them a month in advance which effectively gives you a four month supply.

And unless you're taking some name brand meds, most of the scripts are free when using ExpressScripts. Until the government finds a way to steal the coverage from us, the system works pretty good.
 
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