Did you know that patients who are actively involved in their healthcare are healthier and have better outcomes? What does it take to actively participate in your care as apatient? How do you get started?
Being involved starts with understanding your health problems. Some health problems have confusing names, make sure you know what each problem means. (For example, nephrolithiasis is the medical term for kidney stones.) Then start asking questions, and getting answers that make sense to you. If the answer to your question leads to more questions, it is okay. Keep asking until you understand the answers. Last, start making good choices in your healthcare. Remember: Doctors and nurses are there to make recommendations and provide advice but ultimately it is up to you to follow the plan and make the choices that best fit your lifestyle and preferences.
- Make a list of questions before your appointment so that you get the answers you need.
- Know your diagnosis – this allows you to become educated about your health and identify options, treatments or even support groups for more information.
- Talk with family members about any family health history. Certain problems can be passed from one generation to the next.
- Be honest with your doctor. For example, if you are not taking your medications, let your doctor know and why. There may be a different medication that can be used.
- If you have questions about diet, exercise, and test results, ask for clarity in the recommendation.
- Understand your treatment plan – make sure you understand what you need to do before you leave the office.
- Stay away from Dr. Google. Not everything you read on the internet is accurate or specific to your situation.
Involved patients that become educated about their disease make better long term choices, have better outcomes and are more satisfied with their healthcare experience.
Take the first step and sign up for our CKD patient education classes to learn more. Classes are available at most of our offices. Sign up today!