The Patient Dilemma
Choosing a doctor can be daunting to many people. Sometimes you don’t have many choices as per your insurance network. Other times you seem to have too many choices and find yourself playing Sherlock Holmes and checking reviews and background.
Finally, you find a doctor or at least you think you have and try to make an appointment. You find yourself battling the gate keeper for the office and trying to determine if you have the right insurance or if their availability is good.
It can make finding a doctor feel like mental gymnastics. I know I have found many cases where I was excited about seeing the doctor and the person answering the phone just turned me off.
My adult son called me the other day frustrated and frazzled. The dentist he loves and has used for years has a new receptionist and she is beyond mean and unhelpful. He knows I’m friendly with the hygienist there, so he asked me to reach out. As suspected, it was an issue with new staff.
As with everything else, first impressions matter. But, let’s say I felt warm and fuzzy after talking to the doctor’s office and then I go in and I wait (and I wait and I wait). This is also a turn off from any patient’s perspective because your time is valuable. Time for you meet the doctor for the first time. You’re already off to a bad start.
Sometimes, it’s love at first sight, and the doctor is kind, patient and explains all aspects of your care with you. You feel respected and valued. He’s the kind of doctor who will listen to your complaints or concerns and take you seriously.
But then again, you run into some doctors who don’t seem to want to listen to anything you have to say, or they seem like they’re listening, then completely disregard your feelings or concerns.
In many cases, the doctor is rushing out of the exam room, seeing many patients at the same time. Recently, I had a situation where a doctor that I really did like, dealt with me in a way that was less than professional. It was blatantly obvious he was having a bad day. I get the fact the doctors are people too and everybody has her or his off days, but when you go to the doctor there is a certain level of expectation of professionalism that as patients, we all deserve.
So, what can you do to make sure that the relationship between you and your healthcare provider is a healthy one?
- Communicate and don’t be intimidated or afraid to be your own advocate.
- Show Respect and Expect it.
- If you like your doctor but have issues with staff, let the doctor know with candid feedback.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions or get second opinions.
- If you’re not getting your needs met with your healthcare provider, don’t settle for less than stellar care.
I’m very fortunate to have found doctors who seem to really care about their patients. They do follow up calls to check in on you. They go that extra step to make you feel comfortable and valued.
Do you need a caring and professional provider? Let us help you find a doctor today!!