What rating criteria should you look at when you consider changing doctors?


Quick Answer

When considering changing doctors, patients should look at criteria such as insurance coverage, patient reviews, hospital affiliation and the time it takes to get an appointment. For specialists, it is important to verify the doctor's training, certification and experience.

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Full Answer

When rating a potential doctor, the first consideration is insurance coverage. In-network doctors often have lower co-pay rates. The doctor's hospital affiliation is another consideration; patients should check hospital ratings to ensure quality care.

Patient reviews are an important part of the doctor-rating process. Consumers should look for a pattern of complaints or praise, keeping an eye out for red flags such as reports of inappropriate behavior or inadequate care. A call to the county clerk or the state medical board can reveal if the doctor has been sued for malpractice by former patients.

Patients seeking a specialist should investigate the doctor's training and expertise. Individual certifying boards can verify the doctor's credentials. A conflict between the board's listing and the doctor's claims is a red flag.

Logistics are another way to rate a doctor. Patients should research the time it takes to get an appointment with the doctor. Other factors include the location of the practice, driving time, traffic and overall convenience.

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