Tips for a successful doctor’s appointment
Going to the doctor can be very stressful and talking to the doctor can feel intimidating a lot of the time.
Here are my tips to make the most of your visit; they are:
1. Have your ID, insurance card and copay ready (or cash/card/check if you do not have insurance)
2. When filling out the forms, make sure to read what you are signing. I also recommend taking a picture of all the forms you filled out using your cell phone.
3. Make a list of all the medications you are taking – include supplements and over the counter medications. The list should include the name of the medication, dosage, number of tablets, how often you take them, etc. Bring the list to your appointment.
4. Have the name, address, phone number of your primary physician and the name, address, phone number of the pharmacy you use.
5. Before going to the doctor, write down a list of questions you have and bring the questions to your appointment. If you are too embarrassed to ask the questions, hand the list to the doctor and say that you had these questions (while pointing to the list). – have a notebook ready so that you can write down the answers.
6. If the doctor ends up prescribing any medication for you – the doctor usually does not give you a paper prescription, they send it directly to your pharmacy so ask what the doctor is prescribing – name of the medication, what is it for, how you should take it, number of pills a day, and for how long. (Write this down so that later you can check to see if that’s what was sent to the pharmacy – remember that it might be the brand name the doctor told you but at the pharmacy it might be the generic medication hence the name might not match)
7. Read back to the doctor what the plan is and the doctor will agree or clarify something.
8. At the end of the appointment, thank the doctor and schedule the follow up appointment before leaving.
Let me know what other tips you would add!!