For a good healthcare experience, there are several things you can do before a visit with your doctor. Follow these few simple steps and you'll make better use of the short time you have with your provider.
- Arrive 15 minutes early to your appointment to fill out any needed paperwork.
- Keep your insurance card and identification handy.
- Speak up and ask questions. It's a good idea to jot down all of your questions before you arrive at the doctor's office.
- Don't feel rushed during your appointment. It's your time with your doctor to ask about all of your medical concerns.
- Bring along all your current medications. Make sure they're all in the original containers.
Before You Arrive
- Check your doctor's office website for any forms you can fill out at home. If your doctor's office has no website, ask them to mail or email the forms to you before your appointment date.
- Avoid Monday. This is often your providers' busiest day of the week. And any day of the week will be busier around the times that schools dismiss.
- Whenever possible, ask for the first appointment of the day or after lunch.
- Call your doctor's office an hour before your appointment. Ask if your provider's on schedule and how long the wait is. You can also ask to be added early to the sign-in sheet.
Keep In Mind
- Remember that a nurse practitioner can perform many of the same services as an M.D., including writing prescriptions.
- Respect your fellow patients. Don't use your cell phone in the waiting room. Not only does it annoy your neighbors, you could miss hearing the nurse call you.
- Many providers now follow up with patients via email. Ask your doctor if you can email any follow-up questions.
- If you need to visit an Emergency Room, alert your doctor. Giving your doctor's input to the ER staff could help shorten your wait time.
- You may receive a survey asking about wait times and scheduling appointments at your doctor's office. We hope this information will help you answer those questions positively.