In life, everyone gets sick and most of the time illness never comes at a convenient time. Whether you’re about to go on holiday or are in the middle of a busy work week, being genuinely ill is both physically and emotionally draining in all aspects of your life.
For this reason, it’s essential that you connect with a local medical practitioner who will be able to diagnose your condition, advise you on an appropriate course of action as well as prescribed any necessary medication or tests.
With the advent of smartphones and geographic indexing of businesses on the internet, the most common way people tend to find a reliable GP is by searching the phrase ‘doctors near me’. This combination of words takes advantage of GPS enabled apps like Google Maps in order to find the nearest possible provider.
However, just because a GP is physically the closest to your home doesn’t mean that they are necessarily the best choice when searching for ‘doctors near me’. There are a lot of other elements you need to take into consideration prior to making a final choice.
Let’s take a look at some of those considerations.
Ratings and reviews
When you perform your Google search for ‘doctors near me’, make sure you keep an eye on their star rating and customer reviews. This can be one of the best ways to get some real insight on to how clinic/practitioner operates with regards to the majority of their visitors.
If you notice a low rating of 1-2 stars and a high quantity of negative reviews, it’s a good indication that this probably isn’t a clinic worth visiting. While not every single review can be trusted as an objective, unbiased opinion; a multitude of negative reviews citing similar complaints is usually indicative that something is going wrong with how a business operates.
In the reverse, a clinic with a high average rating and a lot of positive reviews is one that would probably be worth visiting. Hopefully you’ll be able to find a ‘doctor near me’ that’s both easy to get to and delivers a high quality service.
Not all clinics are created equal and some may have the ability to provide extra services that other clinics won’t have. For example, you may be able to find a ‘doctor near me’ that actually has its own in-built pathology clinic which makes the process of getting bloodwork so much more convenient.
Other clinics may have attached businesses like skin clinics or even a psychologist to assist patients who are suffering with mental health issues. Depending on your individual healthcare needs, the presence of these added facilities could make your life a whole lot easier.
Rapport with your GP
Of course, a factor that is of major importance when searching for ‘doctors near me’ is the working relationship your GP establishes with you. A good practitioner will have an excellent bedside manner and make it easy for you to be 100% honest with them about everything that is going on with you medically.
If you end up visiting a practitioner who is unkind, judgemental or simply not a good listener then you should probably find someone else. Often times people can feel like their opinions about their health aren’t respected or acknowledged by their GP because they believe that they are always correct.
While you shouldn’t discount the advice of a medical professional, it’s not wrong to disagree if you feel they may have missed something. As always, getting a second opinion is something that your GP should be happy to facilitate.