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So do you have a sick plan?

A couple of members have asked me about my sick plan … how is it different? How does it work?

As I've said in another thread, my sick plan is basically a shift to the yellow zone, even if I don't have the usual symptoms of my yellow zone. We also have medication prescriptions on file with the pharmacy so that we can fill them without having to go see the doctor.

I do usually CALL the doctor to let her know I've moved to my sick plan. That way, she can decide, "Yep, you got this — no need to come in," or "Nope, this sounds more complicated. Why not let's see you ASAP?" Or sometimes it's, "Okay, we'll try this, but if you're not better by x,y or z, then you need to come in."

A sick plan has saved me a TON of time, a TON of money, and a TON of feeling crappy. 

So … do you have a sick plan? How did you get yours? If you don't have one, what sort of things do you think you need to include in your sick plan?

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  • Pljohns

    Cynthia-THANK YOU for the wonderful info on sick plans.  I don't have one but will definitely be asking the new pulmo about it in 2 weeks.  I have a "sort of" one that I've just devised as time has passed-I know when to add extra nebs, but not always how often or which ones so I generally just throw all of them at it.  If that doesn't work, I hit a short pred taper (start about 40mg) for 5 days and if that doesn't work-I'm toast and need to be seen.  Hopefully they can give me some guidance about when to start what.  

    My old immunologist would keep a standing order for a zpack on file for me so if i got a sinus infection or something like that, i had it.  Haven't had it since she moved, but would like to have it-it saved me several times.  I think the tamiflu is a good one too-I don't know how many times in a year you can take tamiflu or much about it so i want to ask.

    I also want to know if the 40mg taper for me is enough or if I need to start at 60-my normal post hospital taper starts at 80mg and goes down very very slowly over 8 weeks.

  • K8sMom2002

    Lynn, those are super good questions! 

    My sick plan started out very informally as well. Like you, it was a case of, "Okay, doc said do this the next time, and this is the next time." 

    Over time, it became more of a decision tree kind of thing. If this happens, then do that. 

    I'm really comforted by decision trees … they take the questions and confusion out of the situation!

    One thing that I have to remember to do, though, is to let the doc know when I've used a prescription on file. Usually there's no refill on an antibiotic, so they have to call in another one for me if I use it up.

    Another thing: if you're lucky and you don't need to fill a prescription, they DO expire after so many months or years, depending on the drug. 

    So I have to remember to add that to my "action plan" review. 

    Hoping you get some good guidance, Lynn!

  • dory2005

    Cynthia, That's a great sick plan! With flu season, it's so important to be prepared! After my last bout with pneumonia, my sick plan is similar to my yellow zone in that I increase nebs to every 2-3 hours, and prednisone by 20 mg for 24 hrs, and then if I am not better then I call in to the office to see if I need a steroid shot or additional increase in prednisone. Since I'm already on an antibiotic for the next few months, I shouldn't need an additional one (my stomach couldn't handle it ). Since I've had my new action plan in place, it has saved me tons of time (and money) by not having to go to the dr as often. And I feel like I'm being more proactive, and I also think that it makes me listen to what my body is telling me instead of ignoring my symptoms. DH and I already have a plan in place for when we go out of town for a few days next week. I'm really hoping that I will be able to enjoy the time away with no flares, but I'll be prepared in case I do get sick. 

  • Melissa G

    Not sure why, but Bekah is the only one with a sick plan… At the first sign of a cold, we add in albuterol and neb with saline. Because of her food allergies she is very limited on otc medications so she nebs with saline to help with her sinuses. If she needs her albuterol more than every 4 hrs for 24 hrs we have to call the dr. Sometimes, prednisone gets called in sometimes we have to go into the office.