Mills-Peninsula Health Blog

Be Well, Be Well Informed

Finding Dr. Right

Posted on Sep 20, 2013 in Prevention and Wellness

Finding Dr. Right – a primary care doctor who you can trust and rely on – can seem challenging. But it doesn’t have to be. With a few simple steps, you can find a good primary care doctor before you get sick, which is one of the best things you can do for your health.

“A primary care physician is someone who knows not only your medical history and can help you through an illness, but should be someone to whom you can ask any type of health-related question when you are healthy,” Linda Oberstein, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of the Mills Peninsula Division of the Palo Alto Medical Foundation, says. “You want to find a physician who you like and who you feel comfortable asking those hard questions that keep you up at night.”

Follow these tips to find a doctor who meets your needs.

Location matters. Look for a doctor close to your home or work so it’s easy to fit appointments into your regular schedule.

Choose who makes you most comfortable. Consider whether you are more comfortable with a male or female doctor, and if you have any specific language requirements.

Ask your friends.  Friends, co-workers and family members can provide helpful recommendations.

Learn more online. Meet Mills-Peninsula doctors online through our detailed doctor profiles. Visit individual profiles to learn if a doctor has particular expertise in health issues that might affect you, such as allergies or obesity. You may also discover shared connections through languages or special interests.

Check access. Call the office to learn how quickly you can make an appointment with a doctor. Make sure the office hours suit your schedule and learn how after hours calls and lab tests are handled.

Confirm health insurance details. Avoid unnecessary out-of-pocket health care expenses by asking if a doctor accepts your health insurance.

Find a doctor while you are healthy. The best doctor for you is the one who matches your personality and communication style. Rather than wait until you have an acute health issue, schedule a preventive check-up to get to know your doctor.