Is there anything more important to you and your family than your health?
Assuming the answer is no, just how do you go about finding the right doctor to meet the needs of those you care about? If you put your finger up in the air to see which way the wind blows when it comes to selecting a physician, good luck.
In order to find the right doctor and set aside any concerns you may have, by all means give them a good check up, especially if you have or will be relocating to a new town.
Among the ways to review each doctor’s resume:
* Word-of-mouth – This is one of if not the best ways to find the right doctor for your medical needs. Check with family, friends and even co-workers to see who they recommend. Oftentimes, they can point you in the right direction, especially given how many doctors today only specialize in certain areas of healthcare. If you find that several people are recommending one specific doctor to you, it certainly can’t hurt you to check them out;
* Online search – With LinkedIn and other professional services available to most folks today, this is another good avenue to travel when needing a doctor. Look at their qualifications, how long they have been in practice, what areas of medicine they specialize in, and which doctor’s office, clinic, and/or hospital they are tied to. By all means, review a handful of doctors in the specialty you require so that you have a number of choices to go with;
* Social media – More and more physicians are turning to social media to not only promote their backgrounds and qualifications, but also to engage with current and potential patients. By checking a doctor or clinic’s Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn pages, you can gain a lot of information on each practicing physician. Social media is also a great way to determine which doctors actually engage with patients in real-time. If they do not follow up patient questions with timely and informative information, it may give you an idea of the potential lack of service and care you may get from them. Yes, many doctors are either too busy for social media or don’t even know how to handle such accounts, but more of them are at least trying to have a social presence;
* In-person – Lastly, try out different physicians in person to see which one best meets your healthcare needs. There is nothing wrong with asking them in person about their medical backgrounds, how long they have practiced, what their typical doctor to patient care is like, and whether or not they can actually be of help to you. While there is obviously a great deal of competition among doctors for your business, most will do the right thing and recommend someone else if they feel they are not fully qualified to assist you. This is especially true when it comes to the general family doctor recommending you to a specialist.
Even though many patients only get a few minutes of time from their doctors per visit, finding out just how qualified your physician is should never be left to chance.
About the Author: With 23 years’ writing experience, Dave Thomas covers a variety of career and small business topics, including doctor reputation management.