Brain Brawn & Body
Brain Brawn & Body blogs on health, nutrition/fitness, lifestyle, leisure and finances.
Choosing Your Healthcare Hall of Famer
What if there was a Hall of Fame for healthcare professionals? Who would make the line up? Who would you choose?
Your doctor should be the first person to come to mind. He or she is the most important figure in your health and wellness experience.
I certainly choose my doctor. In fact, I can look back at two of my former doctors and would have to vote for them to be first ballot Hall of Famers for the care they gave me. I’m no easy patient, but they all have hung in there with me as I went through a series of very serious health issues. With each of them I tried to do my own analysis and diagnosis, all without the necessary know how. We may not recognize or acknowledge it, but doctors are special people.
My current doctor, Jeffrey Whittle, seems to appreciate me taking an active role in my health. In fact, he has said that he wished that more of his patients were as aware as I am about their condition. I’ve been battling my illness for a long time and I’ve read a number of studies and reports about my condition. I know the side affects of the medicines I have been prescribed and I ask questions about the reasons he is directing me to take them. Sometimes we disagree. I know it’s okay for me to speak up and you should too when you have a question or doubts about the treatment plan being prescribed for you.
I am equally appreciative of Dr. Whittle for not taking my involvement as tampering or meddling, but instead, he encourages me to learn as much as I can about my illness and to ask questions that can help him provide the best medical care for me as possible. I feel it is my duty and my right to know as much as I can about my condition and to share with him the challenges, big and small, I encounter day to day as I live with my illness.
Everyone should do what I do and every doctor should welcome a well informed patient.
Where do you get the knowledge? You read. You go on the Internet to sites that offer credible information about the illness or condition you are trying to understand. Some of the best sites, as far as I am concerned are WebMD, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and of course, BrainBrawnBody.com. On each of these you’ll find relevant information, written by professionals who provide insightful commentary on just about every illness known to man.
Arm yourself with the information you need to sit down with your doctor and have a meaningful conversation about the direction your healthcare should be going in. You and your doctor should always be working toward a place where, if possible, your condition can improve. Taking medication and receiving treatment for an ailment and showing little or no signs of improvement can be frustrating and even debilitating.
Ultimately, you and your doctor must come to terms on what the best treatment methods for your condition will be. But don’t forget, you have an important role in the process. Don’t bail out. The second choice for the Hall of Fame in your healthcare is you.