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Doctor and a patient with a good relationship

Why it’s important to build a relationship with your primary care provider

Having a strong connection with your primary care provider (PCP) is key to managing your health. Ideally, patients are with their PCP for years, so it’s important to have a strong relationship. Here are some tips when you start seeing someone new: 

Establish trust and credibility 

Creating a trusting relationship with your PCP means both of you have a good sense of safety, security and confidence in each other. This occurs by being honest with each other, honoring your commitments, and maintaining transparency.

Communication for a strong connection 

Effective communication is also key in developing a good connection. This involves being honest, even when it’s difficult, as well as being a good listener. If you know you may forget important details, consider writing down reminders or bringing someone else with you to your appointments to ensure details are not missed. You want to feel comfortable asking questions, especially if something is not clear or is confusing. Also, you should know how to communicate with your provider and their office in between your visits. This may be by phone, but many organizations now have online portals that are easy to use and allow the patient to send in information or ask questions.

Manage expectations 

Lastly, it is important to manage your expectations and prioritize their importance. For example, if you want to have more time with your provider, you may need to consider seeing someone who offers longer appointment slots or is building up their practice and therefore may have more time. If you have complex medical problems, you will likely need more frequent visits and you will want to ensure that option is available. Ultimately, finding the right fit and having mutual respect will allow you and your PCP to maintain a long relationship. 

Need a doctor? 

If you’re in need of a primary care provider, TidalHealth has appointments available now

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Profile picture for user Dr. Danielle Giddins
Danielle
Giddins, MD
Contributing Author
& Article Expert
Danielle Giddins, MD has been a member of the TidalHealth family since 2008 and is board-certified by the American Board of Family Medicine. She received her medical degree from Jefferson Medical Coll...
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