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Information about all aspects of finances affected by a serious health condition. Includes income sources such as work, investments, and private and government disability programs, and expenses such as medical bills, and how to deal with financial problems.
Information about all aspects of health care from choosing a doctor and treatment, staying safe in a hospital, to end of life care. Includes how to obtain, choose and maximize health insurance policies.
Answers to your practical questions such as how to travel safely despite your health condition, how to avoid getting infected by a pet, and what to say or not say to an insurance company.

A Medical Binder


Your own copy of your medical history is helpful to keep track of your progress, to show to new doctors, and to provide an easy-to-remember place to store your notes.

Many people keep their medical records in a binder or folder. Or you can keep them online by scanning documents into a file. Any loose leaf binder with pockets for documents will do. If you have cancer, consider the following items which were created for this purpose:

  • A plastic folder from the American Cancer Society,, offsite link tel. 800.227.2345 (referred to as Your Personal Health Manager)
  • A notebook from the Lance Armstrong Foundation: offsite link Search on "Notebook". tel. 877.236.8820,

If you create your own record, information should include:

  • The date you were diagnosed.
  • The precise diagnosis.
  • Copies of lab tests and test results, including pathology report(s) that describe the type and stage of your condition(s).
  • Medical providers
    • Name
    • Address
    • Specialty
    • Telephone number (and mobile number if you get it)
    • Fax number
    • E mail address
  • Health Insurance information, including
    • Name of insurer
    • Policy number
    • Insured if someone other than you
    • Contact telephone number for the insurer
  • Drugs you take, including:
    • Dosage
    • How many times a day
    • When you started taking the drug
    • When you stopped taking the drug
    • Drugs to which you are allergic 
  • Places and dates of specific treatment, such as:
    • Details of all surgeries.
    • If you have radiation, sites and total amounts of radiation therapy.
    • If you have chemotherapy, names and doses of chemotherapy and all other drugs.
    • Key lab reports 
    • Copies of x-raysCT scans, MRIs - preferable on disks. Also keep copies of all x-ray, CT scan and MRI reports.
  • List of signs to watch for and possible long-term effects of treatment.
  • Contact information for all health professionals involved in your treatment and follow-up care.
  • Any problems that occurred during or after treatment.
  • Information about supportive care you received (such as special medicines, emotional support, and nutritional supplements)
  • Contact information for people you want to keep up-to-date.
  • A place to note questions and concerns as they arise. As an alternative, Survivorship A to Z provides a "Prioritizer". You can keep track of questions and concerns. Before you do to a doctor's appointment, you can prioritize your entries with the click of a button.
  • A copy of your Health Care Power Of AttorneyLiving Will and other advance directives.
  • For note taking, extra paper and a pen or pencil.
  • Photos of loved ones and/or favorite peaceful places for inspiration.


  • You can personalize the binder and make it "fun".  For instance, add photos, articles, quite that inspire you, or a place for a journal.
  • While it may seem like a lot of work, empowered patients also keep track of symptoms to help maximize time with doctor(s) and other health care providers. We provide a free interactive chart for this purpose. Click here.

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