Take Charge of Your Health - Be Prepared
March 21, 2018
The average patient is interrupted by their physician somewhere between “18 and 23 seconds into their explanation of what is wrong.”
23 seconds doesn’t leave a lot of time for being obtuse or beating around the bush. Since most of us are not always as clear as succinct as possible, preparing in advance is essential.
If we don’t want to be treated only as a symptom or body part and wish to be considered as a whole person, we must take into consideration the myriad of aspects of our essence, including our social, intellectual, emotional and spiritual selves. We know that it is not easy to identify our needs and feelings about our well-being in each of these pieces of our personal puzzle, which is why we designed the Health-E3 Worksheet to help you determine the areas you feel comfortable and areas where you have concerns.
Identifying your physical, mental, emotional and spiritual needs will enable your health team to provide more targeted and responsive care. In addition to considering all the dimensions of your life that contribute to your health, it is also important to communicate your specific goals, priorities, preferences and beliefs to your health care team. These valuable insights will enable your team to provide more targeted and responsive care; care that aligns with your individual wishes. Organizing your thoughts and questions (as well as those of your caregivers or family members) in advance of your appointment will help alleviate some of the confusion and anxiety many experience when going to a medical provider visit and should help make the most of the time you have together.
Remember, it’s your health and your life – go ahead, take control and insist on the care you deserve.
 H. Beckman, MD, Rochester NY, 1984