A consultation is about sharing in decisions about your care and goals. To make a good consultation you should let your doctor know about your goals, hopes, fears and expectations. This is why doctors ask you for YOUR thoughts.
At the end of a consultation you should know:
- What is your main problem
- What do you need to do about it
- What to do if it does not get any better
To help make the most out of your appointment, please consider the list below:
- Prepare your thoughts and problems in advance by writing down your problem e.g: when your symptoms started, how they have changed
- Do your blood pressure in the waiting room
- Do a urine sample if you have pain passing urine or lower abdominal pain
- Do not try to add another person in on your consultation. Let reception know you need another appointment for this individual or prioritise who needs the appointment more
- 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 have more than one problem please let our Patient Care Navigators know and they will try and get you a longer appointment if possible. Otherwise, let your doctor know at the beginning of your consultation. They may be able to deal with more than one problem if they are related. However, your doctor may make you another appointment for your other problems, especially if they are new or complex problems
- If you have any special needs please inform our Patient Care Navigators in advance so we can prepare the appointment for you first time (e.g. need an interpreter, visual impairment, hearing impairment, prefer male/female doctor etc)
- If you know you have difficulty understanding or explaining things bring someone you trust with you or if you require an advocate see NHS choices for available advocacy services
- Dress accordingly for possible examination. Loose clothing is best and remove any layers in advance
- All our doctors have a special interest in certain medical areas. If you would like to speak to a doctor who is a specialist in a certain area such as dermatology please let our Patient Care Navigators know so that they can book you an appointment with the best doctor for you.
For more information on how to get the best out of your appointment see:
- NHS Choices – Get the most from a doctor’s appointment
- Department of Health – Questions to ask– Translations of this information are available in Arabic, Bengali, French, Gujarati, Somali, Portuguese, Polish, Punjabi, Spanish and Urdu.