Finding the doctor that’s right for you is important, but it can also be challenging. You, of course, need a knowledgeable and skilled physician, but you also want to feel comfortable around your doctor. Whether you’ve moved to a new state, your previous physician retired, or you’re looking for your first family doctor, here’s how to find the right doctor for you.
What kind of doctor do you need?
Not all doctors provide the same services. Identify what type of care you need before searching for a doctor. If you’re looking for a primary care physician, you’re probably most interested in General Practice, Family Practice, or Internal Medicine physicians.
Family practice specialists, like our FirstCare doctors, can be an excellent choice for the whole family. If you’re looking for a primary care physician for yourself, you might consider many factors. For example, you might prefer a doctor who works with athletes or a doctor who focuses on wellness. Our Find a Doctor page lets you view all the MANA physicians and sort them by clinic and specialty. When you click through to a doctor’s page, you can see his or her qualifications and experience.
You should feel free to visit more than one doctor as you decide who you want to work with over the long term. You certainly should have a capable doctor, but you also want to make sure that he or she makes you comfortable.
Different physicians have different styles and one doctor may be perfect for some patients and not for others. The doctor-patient relationship is very personal, so it’s completely acceptable to let your feelings be part of your decision.
In-network healthcare providers
Insurance providers have contracts with specific physicians or clinics. It’s nearly always less expensive to see a doctor in your insurance network. That being said, you can still see a doctor out of network, but you will pay more out of pocket.
Ask friends or family for a doctor recommendation. This can help point you in the right direction to finding a good physician. Just remember that the perfect doctor for your friend or neighbor might not be the perfect doctor for you.
If your primary care provider is retiring, he or she might refer you to another doctor.
Ask your primary care physician for a referral to a specialist.
You don’t want to make your decision based entirely on convenience, but it is something to consider. Are you willing to drive to another city to visit your doctor? Do you want your doctor’s office close to your home, work, or your child’s school?
Maybe online appointment schedule and a patient portal are important features for you.
Is your doctor in a clinic, practice, or network with other physicians and specialists? This makes it easy to find other doctors for your future health needs. For example, the MANA network includes lab services and specialists, so you can have all your medical needs met without extra paperwork.
You might want to consider seeing the same doctor as other family members. This provides the doctor with a better understanding of your family’s medical history, which can in turn lead to a better quality of healthcare.
Can you trust reviews?
You’re undoubtedly going to come across review when looking for doctors online. As with anything, some reviews will be good and some will be bad. How trustworthy are online reviews of medical doctors? It all depends on the quality of the review.
Note that most doctors have just one or two rankings, and they’re often about the receptionist or insurance company rather than the doctor. Be sure to read the reviews and determine whether or not they speak to the doctor’s abilities — don’t just glance at the star ratings.
There are a number of great general practitioners and specialists to choose from within the MANA network. Find a doctor and schedule your appointment today!