Brett S Stecker, DO
Specialty: Family Medicine
Location and Office HoursWelter Primary Care
Raynham, MA 02767
- BC/BS of Rhode Island
- CIGNA HealthCare
- United Healthcare
- Morton Hospital & Medical Center
Will I have to see a primary care provider for referrals to specialists?
Most health plans will require a referral from a primary care specialist before seeing another specialist such as a cardiologist or neurologist. However, some plans do not require a referral. It is best to check with your health plan before seeing another specialist to see if a referral is required. If one is required and you do not have one, you could end up paying the entire bill.
How do I choose a doctor for my cancer care?
American Cancer Society answered
Going through the process of choosing a doctor can take time, and many people are tempted to rush through it to start their treatment sooner. Keep in mind, though, that most people with cancer have enough time to be sure that they get the best care possible. Ask the doctor who found your cancer whether you need to take action right away or if you can take a short but safe amount of time to check out all your options.
Carefully choosing the doctor you need now (such as a good surgeon, radiologist, and/or oncologist) will pay off for years to come. Your relationship with this person will probably last through treatment into long-term follow-up care.
Before you start looking for a doctor, think about the qualities you want your doctor to have. For instance:
- Choose a doctor who has experience with your type of cancer. Studies show that doctors have better success treating a condition if they have a lot of experience with it.
- You will probably need a doctor who is part of your health plan (often called a preferred provider) and/or accepts your health insurance. Otherwise, you may have to pay for your health care yourself. (For more on this, call us at 1-800-227-2345 for a copy of Health Insurance and Financial Assistance for the Cancer Patient, or read it at cancer.org)
- Pick a doctor who has privileges (is able to practice) at a hospital that you are willing to use. Doctors can only send patients to hospitals where they have admitting privileges.
- Choose a doctor you feel comfortable with. Languages spoken, gender, ethnicity, and educational background may be important factors for you. You may also have strong feelings about personality and bedside manner. Some people prefer their doctors to have a business-like manner, while others value a doctor who can help with their emotional health as well as their medical needs. Many people whose illnesses require long-term treatment prefer a friendly relationship with their doctor.
The next step is to schedule appointments with a few doctors. The most important question to ask them is how much experience they have in treating your type of cancer. If you are meeting with surgeons, find out how often they perform the type of surgery you need, how many of these surgeries they have performed before, and what their success rate is.
Why is community so important for parents?
Arianna Huffington, , answered
As we work through the endless challenges of parenting, there is no substitute for building a little tribe of family and friends around us. When I was growing up, raising children was always the task of an extended family that reached far beyond blood ties. From the time I became a mother in 1989 until my own mother’s death in 2000, she was devotedly involved in the raising of my daughters. And my sister has been like a second mother to them. Unfortunately, the extended family is now increasingly considered an Old World curiosity, like horse-drawn wagons and dinner conversation. When, as a child, I ventured onto the streets of my neighborhood in Athens, I was never far from home because I had learned from my earliest experiences that every home was open to me and any woman on the block would mother me as surely as she would her own child -- with a bandage, a spinach pie, a scolding, or a hug. It’s hard to re-create that experience in America today, but we need to conjure up its spirit.
I learn a lot from talking with other mothers. It gives me perspective and the strength we get only when we’re not alone. This has become all the more important to me since my mother’s death, because being in her orbit made it much harder to cling to my fears. Now the online community we have created on the Huffington Post is a place where parents can put politics aside and share their experiences.
As Huffington Post commenter MJ Reynolds writes, “Talking with other parents and sharing our stories always helps me. I find that I am more understanding of the ‘mistakes’ made by friends or relatives than of my own. Being able to sit with friends and commiserate and laugh over our child’s picky eating or refusal to wear shirts unless the neck tag is cut completely off helps me realize that we are more alike than different.”
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