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InterView Magazine

Tips for getting doctor appointments quickly

Sometimes getting in to see your doctor can be a challenge. Listed below are five helpful tips to ease your way to your next medical appointment.

1. If your doctor’s office is busy ask to be put on a waiting list for cancelled appointment times. Studies show that Tuesdays seem to have the highest  number of office appointment cancellations.  Let the office staff know that you are willing to wait in the lobby for a cancellation, and be sure to bring a good book to pass the time.

2. Avoid the medical appointment "rush hours".  Try not to make appointments durining the most post popular weekday time slots—Monday and Friday between 10 am and 2 pm. If you cannot wait weeks to see a doctor, try scheduling appointments between 2 to 4 pm.

3. When calling to make an appointment, schedule it earlier in the week. Wait time goes up as the week goes on. Avoid scheduling appointments later in the week, especially on Thursdays.

4. If your regular doctor is booked solid, ask if you can see a nurse practitioner or a physician assistant (PA). They can usually see you sooner and consult with your doctor if your symptoms are beyond their reach.

5.  When you call to make an appointment, give a realistic description of your symptoms or concerns. For example, know what your temperature is, exactly where you have pain, if pain is worsening, or any other relevant information. Instead of  just saying you are “sick” or “in pain,” tell the person you speak with if you have a temperature (eg, 103 degrees) and give them your pain level on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest level of pain.

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