4 Important Questions To Ask When Meeting A Potential Primary Care Doctor

Choosing a primary care doctor can be one of the most important decisions you ever make when it comes to your health and wellness. After all, your primary care doctor is your first line of defense when it comes to protecting yourself against disease and illness. If you're in the process of shopping for a primary care doctor, it's a good idea to schedule meet-and-greets with a prospective physician before you make your choice. During your meeting with a potential doctor, asking a few key questions can help you determine whether or not the doctor is a good fit for you.

Do You Accept My Health Insurance?

First and foremost, it's a good idea to confirm during your meeting that the primary care doctor accepts your specific health insurance. This is something the front desk staff can likely check for you when you first arrive, so be sure to bring your insurance card and identification. You may also want to find out how much of a co-pay you should expect to pay each time you come into the office.

How Can I Get in Touch With You With Questions?

Some doctors are more accessible than others, so find out exactly what the protocol is for getting in touch with yours. Are you able to email him or her directly with non-urgent questions? If you call and leave a message, how long should you expect to wait before you hear back? It's also a good idea to find out if your doctor's office has an after-hours answering service.

How Far in Advance Should I Book Appointments?

Depending on the size of the practice, you may need to book routine appointments (such as those for physicals) months in advance, so be sure to find out how far ahead your doctor typically books out and make sure it will work with your schedule.

What Types of Screenings Do You Recommend?

Based on your current age and other factors, it's a good idea to ask a potential primary care doctor what types of screenings and specialized testing he or she may recommend for you. This will help you see just how proactive he or she is about your health and wellness and give you a better idea of what to expect as a patient.

Asking these questions as you shop for a primary care doctor will help you narrow down your choices and ultimately make a decision you can feel good about.