A Guide for Older Adults TALKING WITH YOUR DOCTOR
How well you and your doctor talk with each other is one of the most important parts of getting good health care. But talking with your doctor isn’t always easy. It takes time and effort from both of you. In the past, the doctor typically took the lead and the patient followed. Today, a good patient-doctor relationship is a partnership. You and your doctor work as a team, along with nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists, and other health care providers, to manage your medical problems and keep you as healthy as possible. This means asking questions if your doctor’s explanations or instructions are unclear, bringing up problems your doctor may not ask about, and letting him or her know if you have concerns about a treatment or change in your daily life. Good communication between you and your doctor is key to being satisfied with your care and taking care of your health. All of this is true at any age, but especially when you’re older. Talking often and openly with your doctor is key to your quality of life. You may have more health conditions and treatments to discuss. And because your health has a big impact on other parts of your life, your quality of life needs to be talked about too.
National Institute of Aging