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A Healthy You Takes Two

Your relationship with your doctor, and how well you communicate with each other, can affect your care.

You and your doctor work together as a team to address medical problems and keep you healthy. Research shows that patients who have a strong relationship with their doctors and other health care professionals tend to be healthier and more satisfied with their health care.

Whether your next appointment is online or in-person, here are some tips to help you build your relationship with your doctor:

Before your appointment

  • Collect important medical information, such as test results and a list of medicines you’re taking: prescriptions, over-the-counter medicines and herbal supplements.
  • Write down any questions about changes in your routine (for example, diet, exercise or activity, sleeping patterns, etc.) that concern you. This checklist can help you get started.
  • If you think you may not understand or remember what your doctor tells you, ask a family member or friend to join you.

During your appointment

  • Discuss any symptoms you may have and go over your list of questions or concerns.
  • Make sure you understand what your doctor is telling you. Ask questions about anything you don’t understand.
  • Schedule a follow-up appointment if your doctor asks you to.

After your appointment

  • Follow up to get test results.
  • Update your medical history with any new medications or changes in dosage.
  • Monitor symptoms that occur after any changes in treatment or medications.

Visit our Doctor & Hospital Finder to find in-network doctors near you.

Sources:Health Affairs;Harvard;Cleveland Clinic;National Institutes of Health;Care Giver Action