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 January 23

by Karen Purze

The other day I got an automated email saying my brother wanted me to have access to his healthcare portal as his emergency contact. The healthcare system I use has a similar system but I don’t remember ever setting an emergency contact. So I decided to have a look. 

Turns out I did have an emergency contact assigned: my husband. That's ok; he's still the person I want as my primary emergency contact.

His phone number was correct but the address was 8 years out of date. That isn't such a big deal either; I doubt they’ll be sending mail if there’s an emergency. Still, I took a minute to update the address and add his email while I was at it. 

More importantly, I noticed I didn’t have a backup designated. So, I took a minute to return the favor and add my brother as my secondary emergency contact.

Today's five-minute fix is for you to do the same, simple thing: assign an emergency contact.

Five Minute Fix

5-minute Fix: Log in to your healthcare portal and assign an emergency contact.

If you don't have access to your healthcare system's portal, setting up a new account might take you a few extra minutes. The dividends will pay off for years, though: as you log in to request a prescription refill (instead of calling the office), as you review test results (instead of waiting for a call or a letter in the mail), and as you download medical records (instead of going to the office and requesting it in person.)

So that's it. Go do it...and let me know: Did you find any surprises or interesting features in there?

Take Care, 

Karen Purze

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About the author

Karen Purze is the author of Life In Motion: A Guide for Gathering Life’s Vital Details, a workbook to help people get their affairs in order. She is currently working on a memoir about her caregiving experience. Sign up for the Life in Motion Guide newsletter to be the first to hear more!

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