Before your consultation it is often helpful to think about what you want to tell the Doctor or Nurse. This should mean that when you are speaking to them you remember to tell them everything you are worried about or feel is relevant to help the doctor help you.
Before your next appointment, think about the following:
– What are you really worried about?
– What symptoms do you want to tell the doctor about?
– Are you clear what you want from your Doctor? Perhaps a diagnosis, treatment, referral or just advice.
– Do you have any beliefs or concerns? For example, are you worried that your symptom may be cancer?
– Do you have any expectations? Do you think the Doctor should prescribe you medication? Or refer you for a specialist opinion?
Be honest with the doctor. It is important to tell the doctor the main reason you are there at the start of the consultation. If you are embarrassed, don’t be, the doctor is there to help and won’t be shocked.
If you take any medications not prescribed at East Quay, please bring a list of the medications with you.
Please also remember that the Doctors’ appointments are only ten minutes. The Doctors are highly trained and experienced to be able to assess your symptoms from the history you give and any examination required. However, it becomes difficult if you bring more than one or two problems to the consultation – especially if they are new and complex problems. If you have a number of things you wish to discuss please book a double appointment or be prepared to come back for the less pressing problems at another time.
Please try to always see your own GP unless it is a new urgent medical problem. This helps you and your doctor build up a good, trusting and honest relationship. This means you get the best medical care possible.
You may find it useful to write down your questions as it is easy to forget once in the consultation. This can avoid coming out of the consultation and remembering something you really wanted to tell them.
If you don’t feel able to take it all in, you may like to bring someone along with you. They don’t have to stay for any examination but may help you remember what the Doctor said.
Written information is often available for a number of problems. If you would like this, please ask.
Sometimes you can come away from a consultation with a prescription and later you forget what the doctor said. So, it is also useful to think about questions for the Doctor or Pharmacist if you are prescribed medicine.
Questions you may like to ask the Doctor:
- What does this medicine do?
- Why is it important that I take it?
- How long do I need to take it for?
- How do I know it is helping?
- What are the likely risks and side effects?
- What should I do if I get a side effect or don’t feel well after taking it?
- What happens if I don’t take it or stop taking it?
Questions for the pharmacist:
- When and how should I take it?
- Are there any special things I need to do after taking the medication? For example avoid lying down immediately after taking the medication.
- What other medicines, drinks, foods or activities should I be aware of when I am taking this medication?
- Can I drink alcohol when taking it?
Questions for the pharmacist:
- Can I drive when taking it?
- Is there anything that can help to remind me to take my medicines?
- Can I have containers that are easier to open?
- Can I have the leaflet in the pack in bigger print?
- Would pre-payment for prescription be cheaper for the number of medications I take?
- Do I have a medical condition that means I do not have to pay anything for prescriptions?