Many people with chronic pain struggle to find the right specialist to treat their pain. Between insurance companies dictating in-network boundaries and each doctor having his or her own approach, the process can be extremely frustrating.
Wouldn’t it be nice if someone created a simple, clear way to navigate how to choose the right doctor? We agree! In fact, that’s the idea that inspired this post. Whether you are looking for a chronic pain specialist for yourself or a loved one, these three tips should help to make the task quicker and much less painful (pun intended).
Establish Your Needs
The first step is to consider what your expectations are for your doctor-patient relationship. This varies dramatically from person to person, depending on age, condition, schedule, family support and many other factors. However, some of the most common needs Bedford doctors accepting new patients (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville) see guiding patients’ choice of specialist include:
- Location of clinic
- In-Network vs. Out of Network
- Appointment availability
- Language barrier
- Preference of sex, age or religion
- Experience treating my specific condition
- Ease of getting same-day or same-week appointments
- Reputation for empathetic care
- State of the art technology and treatments
Ask Your Primary
We know that – at first glance – this might seem like an obvious suggestion. However, sometimes the best answers are right under our nose. Assuming you like your primary physician, this is often the best place to begin asking for referrals.
Be sure you have already done step one (establish your needs) and have that list handy. Then, reach out via email, phone or visit to ask if your primary doctor knows of any specialists who might be able to serve those needs. An additional benefit in asking your primary is that their referrals will often work within the same network, which may save you the time of checking to see if this specialist will accept your insurance.
Cross-Reference with Online Resources
Once you have a list of 1-3 names, the next step would be to learn more about their reputation on a larger scale. This can mean everything from a simple search engine inquiry to asking friends and family on social media. Some questions to ask include:
- Do you feel that this specialist really listened to your concerns?
- How conservative is this specialist’s approach to surgery and/or medication?
- How easy is it to get an appointment with him/her?
- Is the specialist board certified in the area you need help with? (Check out this free online search database by the American Board of Medical Specialties that allows you to see if a specific specialist is board certified!)
- Did you feel that this specialist was sincerely committed to improving your quality of life?
- Does this specialist have additional training that could allow him to offer a wider range of treatment options?
At CPI, we have Bedford doctors accepting new patients right now (locations also in Bedford and Lewisville). To learn more about our experienced team of pain specialists, and the treatments we offer, visit our website or schedule a new patient visit today!
At CPI, we focus on YOU the person, and not just the pain. Our mission is to provide compassionate, innovative healthcare that exceeds our patients’ expectations. Our core values are honor, excellence, commitment and compassion. We treat patients like family, honoring their humanity. Call today to schedule your new patient visit – we can’t wait to meet you!
Call 817-786-8238 to make your appointment now!