• February
    My Clinic Binder

    Alison Chen, ND

    It’s rounding the end of February and I have surpassed the total number of patient visits required to graduate (I just hit my 300th patient visit this week and you need 260 in total to graduate). I attribute this to “luck”, having great supervisors and shifts, as well as being really organized. Over the past 10 months of my Naturopathic Clinical Internship, I seem to have built a reputation as being the “Handout Queen” (at least that’s what Dr. Patel keeps calling me). With just over 2 months before the 3rd year CCNM students replace us in clinic, I thought I’d share some of the content of “My Clinic Binder”.

    Everyone has their own method of housing their handouts and paperwork– I followed my previous intern because I thought her format made sense and it didn’t cost a fortune. Over the course of clinic my binder has gone through a bit of a “yoyo diet” gaining and losing some content. I suggest you start small with just the basics and add as you go along. Each intern will see a slight variation of patient populations but it’s a good idea to have the fundamental information to give to your patients or reference on the spot.

    Even though hard copies are important, I ALWAYS have backups on my UBS key! Not only does it allow you to alter the format to your preference and add personal contact information on the handout for your patients but it avoids the inevitable “I just gave away my last copy, do you have one I can photocopy” predicament. It also allows you to have your information on file for when you start your own clinic. Putting in a little extra work at first and staying organized will save you loads of time later on in practice.


    To start, all you need is a binder, transparent paper sleeves and some page dividers (I got all of mine from Dollarama! I love a bargain). I divided my binder into categories:

    My Clinic Binder

    My Clinic Binder

    • Paperwork (front pocket)
    • Scheduling and trackers
    • RSNC general handouts
    • Dietary
    • Mental health
    • Physical medicine
    • Condition specific
    • Labs and botanical information

    I keep my door knocker and prescription pad in the front window of the binder for easy access. Now, let’s take a closer look at the actual content!

    Front Pocket Content

    1. Clinic Paperwork

      Clinic Paperwork

      Botanical and patient file request forms (only a couple… Ornella will lose it if you take too many!)

    2. Clinic Attendence, MOWO
    3. Clinic Stickers- I label the tops of the sheets so I don’t need to fumble through all of them
    4. A quick acupuncture/ auricular reference sheet
    5. Blank paper (I usually pre-hole punch the pages to make charting easier)

    Scheduling and Trackers

    1. Agenda- I made my own to help keep me
      Patient Visit Tracker

      Patient Visit Tracker

      organized with patients, times, holidays, lab/ compounding shifts, availabilities, emailing for 4th patient confirmation, etc

    2. Trackers- there are a few on “gmail” to keep track of the number of patients and modalities/ requirements that you need to complete per semester. I am very diligent in filling it out with the date and patient’s initials in case there are discrepancies with your monthly reports… and they are frequent!
    3. Holidays, vacations, make-up dates- I write them out so I know how many holidays I have left

    RSNC General Handouts

    1. Intake questions (LODRFICARA, ROS, Homeopathy, TCM, etc)
    2. Grounding exercise/ message (this is a personal preference)
    3. Life contract, emergency/ help line phone numbers in the area
    4. MYMOP, ROS, Release of Records, Email Consent Form, Internal Patient Referral Form, etc

    Dietary Handouts

    This is by far the largest section of my binder (Therapeutic Order)

    1. Diet Diary
    2. Nutrient content of common foods
    3. Alkaline/ Acid foods
    4. Candida and Anti-Fungal diet
    5. Anti-Inflammatory diet
    6. Hypoallergenic diet, gluten-free and dairy-free options, recipes, re-introduction schedule

    Mental Health Forms

    1. Resources for self-help books, websites, call centers
    2. Adrenal fatigue questionnaire
    3. Beck Anxiety and Depression Inventory
    4. Breathing and Meditation exercises
    5. Sleep hygiene handouts


    Physical Medicine

    1. Sauna protocol and charts
    2. Constitutional hydrotherapy protocol and charts
    3. Epsom salt baths
    4. Castor oil packs
    5. Magic socks and immune boosting treatments

    Condition Specific Handouts

    1. Menstruation and pregnancy- Basal body temperature chart, gynecology history and physical exam form, birth control information
    2. Neurological physical exam chart
    3. Diabetes handout
    4. Hypertension diet and lifestyle log
    5. Cancer dietary recommendations
    6. Fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome- Tender points, activity log, symptom tracker

    Labs and Botanical Information

    1. Price listings for common labs performed at the RSNC- Rocky Mountain, Gamma-Dynacare, Metametrix, Dr. Data
    2. RSNC Tincture list and potencies, quick reference posology and cautions/ contra-indications with specific conditions (ie. Pregnancy, drugs, GI complaints)
    3. Lab forms
    My Clinic Binder

    My Clinic Binder

    As I mentioned previously, my binder has grown to this size and I don’t recommend everyone start out with all of this material. I would recommend having these types of forms and handouts available either in Dropbox or on an accessible USB key to print on demand. I never go anywhere without my USB key!

    My next post will be about preparing for your first day of clinic and the great anticipation of seeing your first patient as a Naturopathic Intern. For any specific questions please email me at info@DrAlisonChen.com

    See you in clinic!

    Alison Chen (ND Candidate 2013)

This website is NOT to be used as a diagnostic or treatment tool. Always consult with your Conventional Medical Doctor or Naturopathic Doctor for specific concerns. In cases of medical emergencies visit your nearest hospital or call 9-1-1.