American Cancer Society
National Cancer Institute
National Institute of Health
American Dietetic Association
Centers for Disease Control
Five Steps to Safer Health Care
1. Ask Questions
Speak up if you have concerns, ask questions, and expect answers you can understand.
Choose a doctor with whom you feel comfortable to discuss your health and treatment.
Take a relative or friend with you if this will help you ask questions and understand the answers.
2. Your Medications
Keep a list of all medicines you take.
Tell your doctor and pharmacist about all the medicines you take, including over-the-counter medicines such as aspirin, ibuprofen, vitamins and herbals. Be sure to report any drug allergies you have.
Additional Medication Issues:
Ask the pharmacist about side effects and what foods or other things to avoid while taking the medication.
Read the label, including warnings. Make sure it's the medication your doctor ordered and you know how to use it.
If the medication looks different than you expected, ask the pharmacist about it.
3. Test Results
Make sure you get the results of all tests and procedures.
Ask the doctor or nurse when and how you will get the results.
Call your doctor and ask what the results mean.
Make sure you understand what will happen if you need surgery. You, your doctor and surgeon should discuss what will be done during the operation. Tell the surgeon, anesthesiologist and nurses if you have allergies or ever had a bad reaction to anesthesia.