Partner with Your Doctor

160_F_53635131_h4FfMsb954uhOCuyqcQxslR682ocpBPNI went to my doctor yesterday for a follow up on my quarterly blood tests for hormonal imbalance and for my annual exam. Ok, you women out there, did you just wince at the words “annual exam?”

I really like my doctor. She is a forward thinking naturalist who combines western knowledge with eastern philosophy and the result is someone who looks at me as a partner, not a problem to be solved. I’ve had a lot of experience over the past few years with a multitude of medical professionals for my Mom and Dad’s cancers, dementia, and nutritional issues. So although I don’t pretend to be an expert in any of those fields, I do know what I expect and require from the medical field.

First of all my doctor gave me almost an hour of her time. She reviewed my test results and together we came up with a 6-step action plan for changes I need to make regarding my vitamin and hormone regimen. Secondly, she listened to my concerns about my current health issues. She didn’t make me feel guilty for asking too many questions. And lastly, she partnered with me to come up with solutions to any problems I was having.

My previous doctor of almost 10 years retired in 2010. I found my current doctor by asking friends and coworkers about their own doctors. I tried two other doctors before I found this one. It was inconvenient changing doctors three times, and it took time to make more appointments, but it was worth it. I didn’t wait to get sick to look for a new doctor, I was proactive. I really believe we all need to be in charge of our own health and that it’s our responsibility to find the resources we need. My doctor is just one of those resources. I was looking for someone I could trust and have a collaborative relationship with.  I may not have looked forward to the “annual exam” part of my appointment yesterday, but I did look forward to meeting with someone I consider a partner in my journey towards health.

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