The search for the right doctor should be something to be considered on the top priority knowing that you will be putting your life and possibly you’re dear ones’ as well on someone’s skill, experience, qualifications and repute. Be it a primary care physician or a specialist like a dentist or dermatologist, picking the right one is indeed a serious business. It is just not about weeding out the unprofessional ones from the swarm but also about the comfort level and trust that you would like to share. The bottom line being that you would want to be in the pink of health with your doctor’s association and that would need a little healthy scepticism when you are on the hunt for the right one.
Decide what kind of doctor you would need
We need different kind of doctors at different times in our lives depending upon the kind of care you are looking for. For special medical needs, you need to see a specialist while a primary care physician is good for all your overall medical needs and your go-to person when you are sick. Having roughly determined the category of doctor you would like to see, the next vital step is knowing the other parameters of choosing the right doctor.
If you are in the market for finding a new doctor, or may be evaluating your current one, here are a few tips that can help you zero down on the right one:
- Certification Matters! – Your search should begin with this step as the medical world is replete with spurious certifications held by doctors, most of them not known to us. While online resources can claim facts about licences and medical education in a very simple way, it should be kept in mind that a board certification can provide some "quality assurance”.
- Availability and location: It is important for you to determine, how well located your doctor is and “is he available for you”? The type of treatment you would have to avail, the frequency of follow-ups, general visiting hours, availability of extended hours and flexibility of appointments are key things to inquire when looking for the right doctor.
- Keeping an eye on the Experience: When looking for a specialist, you know you are in safe hands if your doctor has performed the procedure for enough number of times. It is quite reasonable to ask your doctor the number of procedures he has performed in the past two years and if there are national benchmarks to compare success rates. It is completely within your rights to understand your doctor’s experience in the related field you seek to get treated, so don’t hesitate to ask for them!
- The Doctor’s Style and overall experience: The best way to determine if the he is the doctor right for you is to actually see him in person. It is quite fair to reject one who is not going to fit into your personality. Having a quick conversation will help you find out if he understands your need, expectations and fears and would you be able to depend on him on your medical journey under his supervision.