By Brittany Faux
Clinical Improvement Facilitator
Does it seem as if the receptionists at your doctor’s office are constantly asking for your details? The next time they ask, remember to thank them for doing a great job! Confirming patient information is one of the most fundamental steps a clinic can take to improve care.
Did you have to recite your phone number when you were only in to pick up a lab requisition? If your blood work comes back with a critical result, the clinic team will be able to reach you without delay.
Did you need to repeat your address once again at your yearly physical? Any referrals your doctor makes will now state where you currently live – not your old rental apartment.
Most importantly, were you asked who your family doctor is? Research has shown us that patients who regularly see one physician have better preventative care and improved health. They are also less likely to go to the hospital, and even live longer1.
Having a relationship with one doctor means they will get to know you, your history, and your health patterns. They will be more likely to notice if you are walking slower, talking differently, or if your mood seems to have changed. They will have your most recent health information on file, which can help avoid errors. Finally, developing trust in your doctor over time can help when hearing health and lifestyle advice. Confirming your family doctor is an active step you can take to managing your health.
Patient care is smoothest when all of these details are confirmed at every appointment. At your next visit, take a moment to let your receptionists know that you appreciate the value they place on your health.