Finding the Right Doctor for an Older Adult

There are many situations that can leave family caregivers looking for a new doctor for their aging relative.

For example, insurance changes may cause a doctor to be out of the network available to the senior, or the doctor may move away or retire. Older adults may also move to live closer to family members, making it necessary to change doctors. Whatever the case, it’s important for family caregivers to find a doctor that best meets the older adult’s needs. Below are some steps to take when helping your older family member to find a new doctor.


Home Care Services in Southport IN: Finding the Right Doctor


Make a List of Wants

It’s important that the older adult feels comfortable with the doctor as it will make them more likely to communicate openly. Family caregivers should sit down with their aging relative and find out what they like in a doctor. Ask if they prefer a man or a woman. Think about hours that you need the doctor to be available, too. Also, discuss whether your aging relative would prefer a doctor with a private practice or one who is part of a clinic where they may be able to see other doctors if theirs is not available.


Consider Insurance and/or Medicare

If the senior will use insurance to help cover their medical costs, it’s important to know if they are limited to certain doctors who are in the network. If so, it can be helpful to call the insurance company for a list of doctors in the area. If they use Medicare, you can search for providers on the website or by calling 1-800-MEDICARE.


Ask Around

Ask people you trust who their doctors or their parent’s doctors are. Find out what they think of the doctor, including what they like or don’t like. If you hear the same doctor’s name several times, they may be a good option.


Narrow Down the List

Once a family caregiver has a list of names, they can start narrowing it down. Once you’re down to a short list, call the doctor’s offices to learn more. Ask the office staff about billing procedures, office hours, and other policies. You can also ask about the doctor’s qualifications. In addition to learning about the doctor, pay attention to what the office staff is like since you will talk to them often.


Set Up a Meeting

Once you’ve decided who the most likely candidate is, ask if you can set up a meeting with the doctor. You will probably be charged for the meeting, but it will give you a chance to ask questions and find out if the doctor is a good fit.


If you or an aging loved-one are considering Home Care Services in Southport IN, please call the caring staff at Home Services Unlimited. Serving Greater Indianapolis Area. Call for Immediate Info & Assistance: (317) 471-0760






Etelka Froymovich, RN, MHA
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