Maximize Your Relationship with Your Doctor

Before visiting your doctor for a health concern, it’s important to prepare for the visit.

Before the appointment, you should:

  • Write down questions you may have about your health, so you don’t forget them.
  • Bring your medical history and current medical information with you, including test results and any prescription or over-the-counter drugs or herbal supplements you are taking.

During the appointment, you should:

  • Discuss your current symptoms with your doctor and advise him/her if you are seeing another health care professional.
  • Listen to what your doctor is telling you and make sure you understand any directions. Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification.

Your doctor’s role in your good health

Your doctor is responsible for treating you with respect and is expected to listen, educate, inform and be considerate of your concerns.

During the appointment, your doctor should:

  • Discuss your symptoms in a clear and concise manner, actively listening to your concerns and providing answers in terms you can understand.
  • Encourage your participation in making decisions about treatment options.
  • Ensure that you understand your medications, including their directions for use and possible side effects.
  • Summarize your treatment plan, scheduled tests, when you can expect results of those tests and what those results mean, and your follow-up care, including specialty care.