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Things to Remember When Choosing Your Physician

Choosing a physician that you can rely on is like finding a new best friend. You have to be comfortable on all levels when it comes to opening up about your health-related concerns.  You also have to have a certain amount of trust in that person so that he or she would be able to gain a better understanding about your current state and be able to determine the course of action to administer – in terms of medication and relevant procedures.

Below is a list of things that you should remember when choosing your physician:

1. Determine what type of physician you need whether he is a primary care provider (someone who treats general health conditions such as heart problems, cancer, and the like); or a specialist such as an ob-gyne/gynecologist who deals with female issues, or a geriatrician who provides care for old-aged people.

2. Don’t be afraid to ask your family and close friends for referrals. Taking note of their experiences with the medical practitioners of their choice will help you determine whether or not to heed their advice. This would also be easier for you to learn about the doctors’ genders and ages. (It is a fact that some people are more comfortable consulting with a physician who is of the same sex.)

3. Examine the insurance plan that you have to make sure that you are not restricted to merely choosing medical specialists who are associated with your given policy. When it comes to choosing the right physician, make sure that your insurance will cover your medical expenses.

4. Once you have chosen a prospective physician, don’t be afraid to ask him questions about his medical background and years of expertise; where his clinics are located and what his working hours are;  the facilities and tools that he uses, and; the frequency of how he has treated patients with medical conditions similar to yours. Such questions will help you determine his caliber and how comfortable you feel around him.

5. Do a background check on your chosen doctor and find out if he is certified by your state’s board of medical specialists. You may do this by checking with your local medical companies or by going online and doing your research.

Additional points to remember:

  • Determine if your doctor is able to answer your questions or concerns clearly and concisely.
  • Is your doctor able to communicate with you properly? Are you also able to do the same? 
  • Does your doctor promptly responds to you needs or does it take some time for him to get back to you?