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 Sept - Oct 2004
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COVER STORY: Sherri and Wayne are not invisible when it comes to their ministry!
Did Your Vote Count?
A Reading Resource
The Flavors of Fall
Simple Scrapbooking
3 Easy Gifts to Make
Be Anxious for Nothing
When is it Time to Leave Your Doctor?
Moments with God in the Mountains
Dangling in Depression
Are You Allergic to Your Church
I Want More!
Talk Over Tea with the Editor
Tell Us Your Thoughts
Strive to Thrive Health News
Joy Bites
Strength in the Shadows
Volunteer Corner
Book Review: Cherish the Days
Ask the Doc
HopeNotes: hopekeepers
Group & Leader Information
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When is it Time to Leave Your Doctor?

Changing physicians is never an easy step. Many of us have gone through the process-however painful- to find a doctor who works with us as a partner in managing our pain and illness.

The challenge of finding a new doctor and forming a relationship, however, is unappealing. "I've heard great recommendations for physicians," says Sharon who lives with lupus. "But these doctors are booked months in advance." Personally, I've desperately wanted a second opinion a few times and have paid full-price for it. Remember, you care and understand more about your health-or lack of it- than anyone else, so you must be an advocate for your care.

As an illness progresses, what you need from your physician may change, and yet your physician may not. A new doctor can make all of the difference in your care. Your goal should be to live, not just survive. That needs to be your doctor's goal too.

A 2002 study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine found that most patients wanted to change doctors because of poor communication with the doctor. Patients who felt left out of decisions trusted their doctors less, but it took a lack of ordering tests, or giving referrals for patients to shop around. Before giving up on any doctor, explain the level of involvement you would prefer and with him and ask if this can be met.

When looking for a new doctor, don't criticize your previous doctor. When I've had to explain my reasons I've said, "She very nice and I like her a lot, but she's more passive in her treatment and I'd like to explore some other options." Explain what you are looking for, and ask if this is possible.



This is a partial article. The remainder of it can be found in our Sept/October 2004 issue.
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