Your Health Depends on Good Communication

Your Health Depends on Good Communication

December 2011

Asking questions and providing information to your doctor and other care providers can improve your care. Talking with your doctor builds trust and leads to better results, quality, safety, and satisfaction.

Quality health care is a team effort. You play an important role. One of the best ways to communicate with your doctor and health care team is by asking questions. Because time is limited during medical appointments, you will feel less rushed if you prepare your questions before your appointment.

Your doctor wants your questions
Doctors know a lot about a lot of things, but they don’t always know everything about you or what is best for you.

Your questions give your doctor and health care team important information about you, such as your most important health care concerns. That is why they need you to speak up.

The 10 Questions You Should Know
A simple question can help you feel better, let you take better care of yourself, or save your life. The questions below can get you started.

1. What is the test for?
2. How many times have you done this procedure?
3. When will I get the results?
4. Why do I need this treatment?
5. Are there any alternatives?
6. What are the possible complications?
7. Which hospital is best for my needs?
8. How do you spell the name of that drug?
9. Are there any side effects?
10. Will this medicine interact with medicines that I’m already taking?

Question Builder
Be prepared for your next medical appointment. Create a list of questions that you can take with you whether you are getting a checkup, talking about a problem or health condition, getting a prescription, or discussing a medical test or surgery. Whatever the reason for your visit, it is important to be prepared. Build your own list on line here.

Source:  Agency for Healthcare and Research, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services


Vasculitis Foundation

The Vasculitis Foundation is the international organization for patients with vasculitis, their families, friends and the health care professionals who care for them.