Last winter, I expressed my concern concerning “the other D” (depression) to my endocrinologist. She advised me to see a therapist and prescribed an anti depressant. Not wanting my endo to be responsible for things outside her area of expertise, I began the search for a general or family practice physician to supervise my treatment. My previous GP no longer practices and I have been needing a replacement for some time.
I did a little internet research and ultimately picked the doctor I saw by reading online profiles that the hospital covered by my insurance. I am not really sure what drew me to Dr. R, other than she seemed young and personable from her picture. I figured she would be a good place to start.
When you see a new physician, it’s necessary to treat the first appointment as an interview to be sure that you are comfortable and a good fit with your new doctor. At least, this is how I see my health care. I learned when I first joined the DOC what a difference being an ‘involved patient’ vs an apathetic patient can make in the quality of your care. I think I floored my endo when I showed up at my appointment with a blood sugar log and a request for an insulin pump and CGM along with a .3% drop in A1C. So I came to my new doctor armed with questions not only concerning my specific symptoms for that appointment but also concerning her specific practice. It turns out my first try on finding a new GP was a fantastic success. Dr. R had great answers to all my questions. I’m actually looking forward to my follow up appointment next month.
If you are seeing a new doctor in the near future, here are some of the questions I used to make my decision. I highly suggest coming up with some of your own:
- Why did you go into family practice (or insert his or her specialty here)?
- What is your medical philosophy?
- How do you keep up with medical trends?
- Do you strictly perscribe drug based treatments?
- How do you feel about diet-based or other non-drug based treatments?
- How do you continue training?
- How important is continuing training to you?
What are some of the things you feel important to know before choosing a physician?