Why is good communication with your doctor important?

Have you ever been to a doctor’s office but left without fully understanding your medical conditions and your doctor’s recommendations? Have you ever taken medications without knowing their purpose, or, perhaps, been hospitalized without knowing your diagnosis, prognosis or aftercare instructions? Good communication with your healthcare providers impacts your safety and overall quality of care. It calls on healthcare providers to speak in understandable terms and for you and your loved ones to become better advocates by asking questions.

Doctor visits are much more satisfying for you -- and your accompanying loved ones -- when you have a good understanding of your health. That’s why you should speak up if you do not understand something your doctor says.
Good communication with your doctor is essential to good healthcare. Good communication between a patient and his or her doctor has been shown to promote compliance with treatments, improve effectiveness of interventions and speed recovery. You should feel comfortable sharing information with your doctor, and your doctor should in turn help you understand your medical conditions and share the medical decision-making process with you.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.