4 Things To Do Before Switching Primary Care Doctors

There are a number of reasons why you may need to switch your primary care physician. If you are moving, your insurance changed, or your doctor is retiring, you will need to do a few things before actually leaving them to ensure that your transition to a new doctor is smooth. Here are four things to do:

Find a Doctor: Before you actually have to leave your doctor, you need to find a new doctor. This can be a hard process, as some doctors do not accept new patients, others may not accept your insurance, and some you may not actually be happy with. You will know this when you make your first visit. Don't actually leave your current doctor until you have met a new doctor you are happy with and that will accept you into their care. Since this can be a long process, it's important to get started on your search right away. 

Have a Last Wellness Appointment:  Before leaving your doctor, it's important to have one last visit with them. At this time, you can take notes on any of your current conditions and your doctor's opinion about them. You can take these notes to your new doctor so that they are aware of what has been done to treat whatever condition you have. This way, your new doctor will know what kind of care to continue with. 

Get Copies of Medical Records: On top of taking notes on your current medical condition, you also need to ask for copies of your medical records. When your new doctor is aware of your medical history, they will be able to provide you with the care that you need. They also won't refer you to treatments that have not worked for you in the past. In general, you are sure to have better care when you provide them with your medical records. 

Gather a List of Questions: If you have a good relationship with your current primary care doctor, you can ask them what kind of questions you should ask your new doctor. This is because your primary care doctor knows what kind of care you are looking for, so they will be able to lead you in the right direction of ensuring that the new doctor you choose is someone they feel you will work well with. 

When you know these four things to do before switching primary care doctors, you can be sure that the transition to a new doctor is as smooth as possible and better for you long-term.