It’s about building a relationship between you and your care…
Choosing the right Doctor is an important part of your care. Research your provider. Although an internet search can be time-consuming, it is paramount in making the best choice for your needs. Be aware that reviews might be biased (https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMp1813418). At times when bias, racism, or prejudice occur, it is difficult to address it. Even after choosing a provider, there may be serious concerns about whether you are receiving the appropriate care. Listen to your gut, and if necessary, seek another provider. Stay with someone you trust and are comfortable with.
You know your body better than anyone. The doctor knows the disease and medications; however, it’s an educated guess about how your body will respond. You need to research your disease and know why you are on your medications. If you have multiple medical conditions and are prescribed various medications from different offices, they might not fully
understand your overall medical course. If you have side effects, ask if there are other options. Also, be prepared for your
appointments. Have a list of questions readily available regarding your care. You may also ask for information on a community to join for support, or you may look online.
Communication -Speak up
You are in control of your health, and you have hired your team to maximize your results. Complain and compliment. Make complaints and compliments official by filling out surveys, writing a letter or calling the patient experience department, and verbally discussing if this is your preference. Oftentimes, When you compliment, the team will be appreciative and give more of it.
It takes a village
COVID has highlighted the importance of bringing a support person, whether virtually or in-person. A support person can ask the questions you may be afraid to ask. However, do not bring someone who will talk over you or make it about themselves.