On any given day, a physician likely has about 20 patients to see – in addition to calls, paperwork and other administrative duties. It leaves very little time spent with each patient, which explains why it is vital to make the most of that time and make certain you clearly understand the outcome of each appointment.
- Don’t be reluctant to ask questions. With such a time crunch, your physician may have a tendency to relay information to you quickly. That’s why it’s your responsibility to hit the pause button to ensure that you fully grasp everything that is being communicated and to speak up with any questions you have, regardless of how small or seemingly unimportant it may seem they are.
- And, prepare beforehand for those questions. It could be challenging to absorb everything being shared with you in the few minutes spent with the doctor. Developing a list of questions ahead of time can help guarantee nothing slips through the cracks. Several questions to consider include:
- Exactly what are the long and short term ramifications of my condition?
- What may be the reason behind this disorder?
- Is there a cure?
- Where can I find further resources?
- Will I need any specialized tests?
- Are there any potential side effects from those tests?
- When will I be given the test results?
- What treatments are out there to help with my condition?
- What are the likely adverse side effects of these medications?
- Are there any kind of changes in lifestyle I ought to look into making?
- Take excellent notes. Bring along paper and a pen, or use the notes section of your smartphone or tablet, and write down answers to your questions in addition to any other information the physician provides. It can be helpful to have a dependable family member or professional caregiver on hand during the appointment to make sure everything is captured.
- Include other medical experts. Keep in mind that even though the information supplied by the doctor is vital, other individuals in the senior’s medical team can provide beneficial insight as well: nurses, pharmacists, physician assistants, dieticians, physical therapists, etc. Check in with these professionals for further assistance in carrying out the doctor’s guidelines if warranted.
At Home Sweet Home In-Home Care, the Portage home health care leaders, we are always here to help seniors through medical appointments and procedures in a variety of ways, and to help carry out doctors’ instructions after returning home. With our in-home senior care, we can provide transportation, medication reminders, preparation of meals that are in adherence with any prescribed dietary plan, and many other tasks to ensure the best possible health for seniors in Portage and the surrounding cities. Call us at (269) 373-5444 (Kalamazoo, MI), (269) 763-5350 (Paw Paw, MI), (269) 849-9252 (St. Joseph, MI), or (269) 963-9888 (Battle Creek, MI) for more information!