Be Involved in Your Health Care
People are empowered when they have the knowledge, ability, resources, and motivation to identify and make healthy choices. When people are empowered, they are able to take an active role in improving their health, support their families and friends in making healthy choices, and lead community change.
To receive optimal health care, it’s important to be an active participant. Use the information below to help you engage with your health care professionals during your appointment. Also use our Care Matters and Endorsed Links sections on the navigation menu above to stay informed on best practices for planned, proactive and preventative health care.
Before Your Appointment
- If this is your first appointment or you have had changes in your medications, make a list of all your medicines. Include prescription medicines but also non-prescription medicines such as aspirin or antacids, vitamins and dietary or herbal supplements.
- Write down the questions you have for this visit, questions related directly to the issues the appointment was booked for.
- Know your current medical conditions, past surgeries, and illnesses.
During Your Appointment
- Ask questions to make sure you understand.
- Let your health care provider know if you are worried about being able to follow his or her instructions.
- If a treatment is recommended, ask about options.
- If you need a test, ask how it is done, how you will feel, what you need to do to get ready for it as well as how you will get the results.
- If you need a prescription, make sure your health care provider knows everything else you take including vitamins and herbal supplements.
- Make sure you leave the appointment knowing what’s next.
After Your Appointment
- Always follow the instructions given by your health care provider.
- If you do not understand your instructions after you get home, contact the office.
- Talk with your health care provider before stopping any medications that have been prescribed.
- Contact the office if your symptoms get worse or if you have problems following the instructions given.
- Follow through with all tests and specialist appointments that are recommended.