Tara Ross Reams is a mom, graphic designer and provides care to a wounded veteran. She reached out to us through our blog’s contact page and asked that we review the caregiver planners she sells on Etsy that are designed to make life easier for caregivers.

Tara Ross Reams designs planners for 1) daily care for tracking glucose and blood pressure, 2) organizational lists for doctor/specialist contact information, and 3) medication list and weekly medication prescription refilling. She also offers many other ideas for organization and planning for caregivers, including a calendar for hospital visits and TBI/PTSD care. I used each of these planners in my own caregiver life, to experience the advantages of these organizational tools. I want to share with you what I found helpful and what could make these excellent tools even more fab!

Medication Tracker

Medication Tracker

Tara Ross Reams has designed the Medication Tracker to help caregivers manage what can often be a cumbersome task – remembering details of all of the medications (e.g., frequency, dosage). I can personally attest that the task of managing medications can be overwhelming. This Medication Tracker can be printed and could be easily converted to an electronic file and used on the SmartPhone for ease of use. When meeting with medical professionals, caregivers have often found it convenient to have a printed copy available, and for those times when Wi-Fi may not be working in a hospital or medical building, this printed tool is indispensable!

This printable can be converted easily to an electronic file for iOS or Android. To do this, a person would need to download an app to convert the PDF or JPEG to a writable version. For example, one could install an app, such as PDF Converter.

Doctor/Specialist Log

Doctor/Specialist Log

Caregivers have the task of organizing the names of the physicians and medical providers that make up a person’s treatment team. I know many caregivers who keep a business-card-notebook to arrange the names of each Specialist that may treat the care recipient for a different injury. And, for those who care for someone with multiple traumatic injuries, (or polytrauma) this could be a valuable tool. This Doctor/Specialist Log is a form that caregivers can use to list the names, contact information, and location for each Specialist involved in their care recipient’s treatment. I found this excellent resource extremely helpful to navigate through the doctors and specialists that have been recently added to our treatment team! To have a completed list at one’s fingertips could be extremely helpful, and could help a caregiver to coordinate care in a more efficient and organized way.

Daily Respite Care Sheet

Respite Care Sheet

This printable is well thought out with graphics to record the care recipient’s mood, meals, vitals, bathroom visits, napping, and activities. After studying this printable, it seems to be a tool that the caregiver can use to document the veteran’s needs and activities. The Daily Respite Care sheet would probably be a great resource to have for a home health aide that comes in, to show what the care recipient needs throughout the day. So, when the primary caregiver needs a break, the caregiver can provide a completed record to another person about what the care recipient’s needs are.

When a caregiver needs to leave for respite, it helps to have instructions in place for the replacement, and this tool helps to relieve the guilt (at least a little:-) when a caregiver leaves for well-deserved respite care. However, since a caregiver is very busy and will probably have limited time to complete this beforehand, it would be helpful to add an explanation (especially for someone new to caregiving) in a few simple steps why this form is essential, as well as how to use this one.

All in all, I believe these resources are invaluable, and that every person who provides care to an individual should have these! The price of each printable varies from $3 – $8. When you visit the Etsy store, let Tara know that you heard about these amazing organization tools from this blog post! I encourage each caregiver to visit Tara’s Etsy Page and consider purchasing these printables to add to their library of organizational resources. I believe you will find that the practical application of these will be a tremendous help to you all!

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