Choosing A Doctor Is The First Step To Long-term Health

As seen on KTHV 11

When talking about the importance of seeing your doctor on a regular basis, it's important to not ignore the most basic first step, choosing a doctor.

Here are five things to remember when choosing a doctor as taught by the young and old.

Young Dr. Eric Joseph is joined by experienced patient, Rickey Newton, who has the gift of hindsight.

“I never went to the Doctor till I turned like 40 and then you need one,” said Newton.

     1. Check with your insurance
Your insurance company may have a list. You can find one on a clinic's website, but the best method might just be to listen

“Ask their friends. Ask their family who they enjoy going to” Doctor Joseph says.

Newton says, “A lot of times you hear people talk and I go by word of mouth more than anything.”

     2. Start with the basics
Start with your basic, primary care physician, general practitioner experienced in general checkups.

“There's a lot we do in the primary care setting that would not be done necessarily in an urgent care clinic or in an ER for instance.”

“Something may sneak up on you and you don't know it without checking,” says Newton.

     3. Establish a rapport early
Doctor Joseph says, “The main thing you're wanting to look for is who would be a good fit for you.”

“And I finally found one that listened and uh started taking care of me.”

     4. Be picky
“Even if you know, the first meeting with a given physician does not go well, it's no reason you should give up and not continue to seek out a primary care physician.”

“If you find one on the front end that works, keep him, if not keep shopping, there's a bunch out there,” said Newton.

     5. Plan on a long-term relationship
“You will have the ability to grow up with that physician as well and continue to build that relationship over several decades as opposed to just an acute setting where you're going to be seeing that one physician that one time and maybe never see him again,” says Doctor Joseph.

“You better start early because uh all the good ones may be booked up.”

Take these lessons to heart cause you men know you need to put on the gown. Listen to the voice of experience.

“You need somebody. You need somebody back there on your side.”