Dating your physician

17 Apr

Some patients don't follow treatment programs because they're disorganized, he said, but others might fail to comply because they've experienced serious side effects, don't fully understand what they're supposed to do, or found the treatment wasn't working.

2 thing doctors said patients could do to get better care; 61 percent said it would help "very much." But 70 percent said that since they had started practicing medicine, respect and appreciation from patients had gotten "a little" or "much" worse. Patients who gave their doctors high marks for "professionalism" were more likely to be highly satisfied.

We measured professionalism by looking at whether patients thought they had been treated respectfully and whether their doctor seemed technically competent, took their medical history into account, listened with patience and understanding, and spent enough time with them.

Patients were much more satisfied if they trusted and had good personal rapport with their doctor.

Slowly but surely, primary-care doctors are switching over to electronic medical records.

Doctors said that forming a long-term relationship with a primary-care physician is the most important thing a patient can do to obtain better medical care, with 76 percent saying it would help "very much." "That continuity is really undervalued," said Jessie Gruman, Ph.D., president of the Center for Advancing Health, a patient-advocacy group in Washington, D. Gruman said that because of a health history that included three separate bouts of cancer, her longtime primary-care doctor urged her to tell him promptly about any new symptom, no matter how minor, that lasted more than two days.