There are few professional relationships that are more personal than that of a doctor and patient. Trust and comfort are crucial if therapy is to be a success. Having said that, it is also important that the person treating you knows what he or she is talking about.
Step One: Know what you need
What qualities in a health care provider are important to you? The following is a list of traits that people most often mention when asked what they want from a health care professional. You may or may not agree that every one of these qualities is important.
In fact, some of them are mutually exclusive. That's OK. As you read over the list, think about which qualities ARE important to you. Write them down, as in I want health care professionals who...
Philosophy of Treatment
I want a health care professional who...
- recommends natural alternatives to medications
- uses minimal medications
- uses typical doses of appropriate medications
- allows me to make my own decisions about treatment
- considers my input in the treatment process
- strongly recommends a course of action based on his or her professional expertis? and experience
It is important to me that my doctor (therapist, counselor, etc.)...
- Cares about me as an individual
- Listens to me
- Shares the my religious beliefs
- Has a sense of humor
- Can offer advice beyond medication issues
- Is willing to educate my family about my disorder
- Understands the positive aspects of ADD
- Is himself/herself a person who has ADD
My financial situation means that I...
- Can afford any doctor I would choose
- See only the doctors that are part of my HMO
- See doctors who understand my financial constraints
I need to avoid doctors who...
- Rely only on medication treatments
- Are not available, or do not have an adequate back up system, when I need them
- Are afraid to try new treatments
- Insist on trying new treatments
- Are authoritarian
- Are too easy going
Things to think about:
Are there any other qualities that are important to you?
Who do I know that could recommend a doctor who would fit my needs?