1 Obligatory list
When going to the doctor’s, it is worth taking with you
- your personal ID card
- residence card
- Social Security card
- previous medical documentation (final report, outpatient card)
- your logs of different chronic diseases (blood pressure diary, diary of pain, seizure diary, exercise diary)
- drug list (name of the drug, presentation (how many milligrams you take) and how often you take each day)
TIP: Good solution is to cut the medicine box next to the label and enter a daily dose. You may ask your family member with access to computers to make a table with your medicines.
The list should be updated regularly!
2 Information from the GP
Our GP knows us best, the different results all end in their hands, they send us to a specialist, sends us on sick leave or extends our driver’s license based on our overall health state.
TIP: For this reason, be sure to take the final report and the outpatient card each time back to your GP, who shall update and/or make a list of actual medicines. Namely, there are GP’s who indicate the list of medicine already on the referral to the specialist.
3 Make yourself understood
Be prepared when you visit your doctor. Especially when seeing one for the first time.
TIP: To ensure good communication, bring your glasses, dentures, hearing aid, if necessary.
4 All information is important!
Do not be caught off guard with questions such as history of disease in the family and in our own lives. If we suffer from more than one disease, take your previous outpatient cards, final reports, in a chronological order and in a folder. All this allows us to save money, which we can turn into solving your health problem instead of wasting it on sorting your documents.
TIP: Many people fall into the trap of telling their doctors only a part of the symptoms with the exclamation “I thought it is not relevant!”. Since out organisation works as an intertwined whole, mentioning a seemingly irrelevant symptom may help the doctor set up the right diagnosis. You should therefore say more, not less.
5 Do not be afraid to ask!
Doctor’s consultation is limited, the patient is usually embarrassed and foreign words are thrown at them constantly. No doctor would probably turn you down if you kindly ask them to summarise one more time what health care problem you are facing, and what you should pay attention to.
TIP: If you were in the position more than once when questions came to your mind after you have left the office, next time prepare by writing your questions on a piece of paper.
6 The time factor
When you have a booked appointment, arrive 5-10 minutes early. Namely, a doctor-patient meeting is often preceded by administrative tasks. Be prepared for delays. They usually happen if one of the patients arrive with unexpected problems which need extra time. Do not get angry about it. If you are the one having unexpected problems and questions, other patients will probably acknowledge that your visit takes more time.
If the surgery adopts a first come first serve policy, always inquire from the other patients waiting who was there before you. If there is a note on the surgery’s door saying the consultation does not happen in first come first served order, it is worth taking into consideration.
TIP: Take some magazines or books with you to read while waiting, or perhaps use the time available to write down the questions you would like to ask the doctor. During the wait you may also think about the errands you need to run that week or return your missed calls.
If you are taking your child with you to the appointment, take care of their food and drink as well as modes of entertaining them. If you needed to leave for the surgery in a hurry, and could not prepare for the wait, try to entertain your child with games like rock-paper-scissors, word chain, twenty questions, etc.