Recent research has shown that in the United States, people spend more time looking for a new car than they do researching a good doctor. According to the report, 42% of adults take at least 10 hours to choose the ideal vehicle, while many others spend less than 1 hour researching a professional and hospital that can provide them with satisfactory service.
Although no study of this type has yet been published in Brazil, it is worth asking ourselves if we are really spending enough time in choosing a professional or hospital to take care of our health.
Of course, in emergency situations, we don’t have much time for that. But in cases of a surgery that has yet to be scheduled, in the search for a professional in a certain area to attend to you, it is worth researching!
A hospital or health plan has several doctors. Are all professionals equally good? This is an initial question to ask.
It is not a question of doubting the medical capacity, but here we consider that a good doctor is also one who knows how to care for his patient, after all, dealing with health requires much more than good training. The professional must be attentive, demonstrate knowledge, convey security, etc.
In this sense, here are some tips on what you should/can take into account when choosing a good doctor or hospital:
“Whenever I need to go to a doctor, I talk to my friends and family asking for referrals”, says Fernanda Pouso, secretary, 32 years old.
It is important to hear other people’s statement about a particular professional and even about a hospital. But it is essential that more than one opinion be taken into account. The same doctor who was good for a good person, may not have been right for another… The more testimonials you hear, the better!
2. Keeping an eye on the curriculum
Get into another habit: that of checking the professional’s resume. Confirm that the name appears on at least two reference lists: that of the regional council of medicine and the Brazilian society or association of the specialty to which it claims to belong – Brazilian Society of Dermatology, for example. This kind of research is completely simple these days, thanks to the internet!
“I have the habit of researching the Lattes Platform website before choosing a doctor. There, in addition to professional training, I can see places where they worked, specialties, etc.”, says Patrícia Maneu, a 28-year-old journalist, referring to the online address Lattes, which is a database of CVs in the area of science and technology in the CNPq (National Council for Scientific and Technological Development).
3. Give preference to specialization
If, for example, you have pain in your knees, give preference to an orthopedist who works more specifically in this area. When evaluating the professional’s resume, it is worth knowing which areas they specialize in and which cases they handle most often.
4. Visit more than one doctor
In more serious cases or cases that require further investigation, the tip is to schedule an appointment with at least two professionals, thus listening to different medical opinions.
“I had a knee problem. A doctor suggested that I operate. Another thought I could improve by just doing physical therapy. It was essential to hear two opinions, because I resolved my situation without needing surgery”, says Maria Lúcia Pereira, a 58-year-old housewife.
The way the doctor treats his patient in the consultation makes all the difference. The same goes for the care of nurses and hospital staff.
“When we look for a doctor, regardless of the area, we want to be treated well. He must listen to our questions, have the patience to explain to us what is needed. I believe that this point is fundamental for the choice”, says Fernanda Pouso.
Although this is not a rule, some doctors do not bother to give the patient their cell phone number and make themselves available to assist her in case of doubt. This attitude is more common among obstetricians who care for pregnant women. But in any area of health it is a factor that attributes positive points to the professional.
However, this does not mean that the doctor who does not give his cell phone number is not attentive and, much less, that he is not a good doctor. Each professional has their own way of working and caring for their patients, which must always be respected.
7. Transmit security
Most people, when they seek medical help, have a health problem or are worried about a symptom that they still don’t know what it represents.
The doctor, in addition to attention, must offer safety to the patient. He must demonstrate mastery of what he is talking about, investigate the case if necessary (by ordering tests, etc.) and reassure her when necessary.
It is important that the patient, regardless of what her health problem is, see her doctor as the person she can trust, with whom she can always clarify her doubts and put an end to her anxieties.
After all, trust is the basis for any relationship to be lasting, including the professional-patient one.
Keeping an eye on these issues makes it easier to choose a good doctor and also a hospital that can offer you the best possible care. And remember: if the first professional you visit doesn’t give you enough confidence or security, don’t hesitate to visit the second or third one… After all, health is no joke! And this is the kind of choice that can make all the difference in your life.
The information contained on this page is for informational purposes only. They do not replace the advice and follow-up of doctors, nutritionists, psychologists, physical education professionals and other specialists.
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