How to Be More Confident Talking to Your Doctor

The single-most important way you can stay healthy is to be an active member of your own healthcare team.

Be an active member by creating a good relationship with your doctor. Research has shown that patients who have good rela¬tionships with their doctors tend to have better results and great¬er satisfaction with their care.

Here are some tips to help:

  • When you talk with your doctor, it’s important to tell him/her the exact reason for your visit or phone call. Make sure you have specific information ready to explain your situation.
  • Make sure you have your list of medications, pharmacy name and number, and your current problems/illnesses/diagnoses. If you use a personal health record, you’ll already have this information on hand.
  • Describe your symptoms, such as “I’m having pain in my chest,” or “I’m having a hard time breathing.” Be prepared to answer when you began feeling this way and what makes it better or worse.

Having this information ready will help you feel more confident during the conversation. To help you prepare for these typical conversations with your doctor, print the “Talking with Your Healthcare Provider” checklist and Quick Tips When Talking with Your Doctor.

Contracted by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), atom Alliance works with providers and patients to improve healthcare quality for those in Alabama, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi and Tennessee. Learn more here.