Health Matters: How to Find the Right Doctor for Your Needs

posted by Chris Valentine

Do you feel like your doctor doesn’t get your concerns? Need a second opinion? The right doctor matters. Learn how to find the right doctor for your condition.

56% of doctors spend no more than 16 minutes tending to their patients one-on-one. For some patients, this is perfectly acceptable but for others, it can feel like they are being ignored by their practitioner.

In the following sections, we cover how to find the right doctor for you and special considerations to take into account to ensure compatibility.

How to Find the Right Doctor In 4 Easy Steps

Choosing a new doctor can be a daunting task. From selecting a practitioner who has the necessary experience and credentials to finding a clinic that accepts your insurance, finding a doctor can seem like a second job.

Break your search down into four separate steps:

  1. Assessing your needs and situation
  2. Ensuring your preferred clinic accepts your insurance
  3. Determining the doctor has a clean track record and reputation
  4. Deciding all factors, from age to gender, meet your preferences.

1. Assess Your Needs

Determining what you need medical care for. Are you searching for a new OB-GYN, an oncologist, or a podiatrist? For example, if you need care specific to injuries from an accident seek help from a car accident doctor with specialized experience.

This is ultimately one of the most important parts of your search as you can’t see a pediatrician as an adult or a surgeon for acne.

2. Check That They Take Your Insurance

Right after finding a doctor who can treat your specific medical concern, you need to determine that their practice will accept your insurance.

Technically, if you find a doctor you’d rather see outside your insurance network, you can still see them. However, this is coming directly out of your pocket. With the high cost of medical expenses, it doesn’t make financial sense to purposely seek out care from doctors that don’t accept your insurance.

3. Research Your Doctor’s Track Record

A little online research can go a long way when determining if a doctor is right for you. Check for reviews of their practices and any relevant credentials they hold.

It’s also wise to check the bio of your doctor. This can usually be found on the clinic or hospital’s website. It will give you insight into how long they’ve been practicing, what medical school they graduated from, and their specialties.

4. Consider Other Factors

You shouldn’t judge a doctor solely based on their age or gender, but it can give hints into how they practice medicine and how comfortable you might be with them. For example, women are sometimes more comfortable with female doctors – especially when considering a new OB-GYN.

Age can also give you a peek at how your doctor may approach treatments. Younger doctors are more likely to be familiar with the newest technologies and medical innovations. Meanwhile, older doctors have far more first-hand experience.

Other factors to consider are:

  • Clinic affiliation
  • Languages spoken
  • Location of practice

If a doctor doesn’t meet all your preferences that doesn’t mean they won’t be a great fit for you. Consider their overall resume and how well their experience fits your medical needs.

Pick a Doctor That’s Right For You

Determining how to find the right doctor for you depends on your individual situation and preferences. It’s important to only stay with doctors you trust. Don’t feel guilty about moving to a new doctor if your current practitioner isn’t a good fit.

Check out our other medical articles for more health guidance.

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