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looking for a physician

When I found myself in need of a new rheumatologist, I did the following:
I took a piece of notebook paper, and made two columns. On one I wrote down the qualities that I bring to a doctor, ie: I keep my appointments, I don't abuse my medications, I don't call with unnecessary issues, that sort of thing.
On the other, what I needed from a doctor. ie: when I call with a question, or health problem, I need to be listened to, if I say that something is urgent, then please treat it as such, if I am worried about a symptom, please bear in mind I don't call unless there is a problem. I also need a doctor who will work as a member of a team, not just for his own practice, but to work with all my health providers. This last was crucial for me. If I have one physician who does not think he/she needs to be a member of a team then what that physician can add to the benefit of us all, makes everything that the rest share less beneficial.

Then, I called the doctor I was considering. When he called back, I explained that I was looking for a new doctor. I went thru both sides of my list, and at the end, asked if he thought we could work together. After consideration, he said that would work for him as well as myself. I have now been with this doctor for 16+ years and it has worked out well for both of us. It took him by surprise to be interviewed, but was a good move as it put everything out in the open. He has since joked that it was the only time he was interviewed to be a provider, and has enabled both of us to have everything out in the open from the beginning.

Hopefully this will help you to identify what you need from your team of physicians and help all of you to gain the most you can together.
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