Getting the most from your medical appointments
You may feel overwhelmed with appointments as you see several specialists over a short amount of time. Our team of experts will support you through your journey and provide everything you need, close to home. Medical oncologists, radiation oncologists, surgeons, oncology-trained nurses, social workers, nutritionists and others may be part of your care team. They will work closely with you and with each other to create a personalized treatment plan that’s right for you.
Here are a few tips to help you get the most from your first visits:
- Write down your questions or concerns ahead of time and bring them with you.
- Take a relative or friend along to help you remember what is said.
- Don’t hesitate to take notes, or have someone take notes for you, if you find it helpful.
- Ask questions along the way. If you wait until the end of the appointment you may forget them.
- If you don’t understand something, ask for an explanation. Your care providers will provide as much information and education as you find comfortable at any point in time.
What to bring with you:
- A list of medications and dosages you take, including prescriptions, over-the-counter medications, vitamins and herbal supplements
- Any requested medical information, test results, X-rays or forms
- Contact information for a referring physician, if you have one
- Insurance information, including any insurance cards or a Medicare card
- Your living will or other health care directive. If you don’t have one, our staff can help you
- A book, knitting or other activity to help pass the time between appointments
What you need to know after every appointment
Make sure you know what’s next after every single cancer related medical appointment. You may wish to keep a calendar or file in order to keep all your records in one place. The information you need before you leave every cancer care appointment is:
- What is my main problem or concern right now?
- What do I need to do about this problem or concern?
- Why is it important for me to do this?
- What is the next step in my treatment and my next appointment?
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