Earlier this month I had my annual physical at the same clinic where I’ve been a patient since returning to Idaho in the mid 2000s. In that time, I’ve had three different primary care physicians; two of which I’ve really liked.
The first physician moved from treating patients to a leadership role when the clinic merged with one of the local healthcare systems. This was unfortunate because he was a great physician that seemed to truly enjoy patient encounters. That resulted in my being paired with the second physician.
Unfortunately, the patient-provider relationship was strained from the beginning. I’ve worked with lots of healthcare providers over the years in my career, but I can’t remember an individual that had such dislike for her chosen path. The bedside manner was horrible. And it always felt like I was wasting her time. Not the type of relationship a patient is looking to have with his physician.
This brings me to my current physician. She’s awesome. Professional and personable. The type of physician you actually want to visit. She does a great job listening to my developments, identifying potential concerns, and providing guidance on steps I should take to maintain my health.
As I informed her during my last visit, I almost sought out a different medical home due to the poor relationship with the second physician. Fortunately she was unavailable during one of my visits and the third physician subbed in for her. The last three years have seen a much improved patient-provider relationship. I’m very happy to have her professional expertise and insights as I grow older.
It’s hard to express how important it is to have a physician that you trust and respect. Truthfully, if you had more physicians like her, we might actually see a greater percentage of men receiving annual physicals earlier in their life.
What have been your experiences with your primary care physician? Have you found the relationship beneficial to your overall well being? Please add your thoughts in the comments section.