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Why is your doctor spending so little time with you?

Like most in Redwood City, you do not look forward to a visit to your doctor. In fact, once your examination begins, you may be silently hoping for it to end. However, you certainly do not want your doctor to feel the same way about seeing you. You expect them to take the time needed to accurately assess your clinical condition and come up with a correct diagnosis. The question then becomes how long is needed for that to happen? 

A typical doctors visit (outside of emergency situations) usually consists of: 

  • A review of your medical history 
  • Questions as to your current symptoms 
  • A review of your body systems
  • Time spent (both with and away from you) developing a diagnosis and a treatment plan

Diagnostic testing through radiological scans or lab work may be also required. 

Adding all of those different elements up in your head, you might think that at least 30-40 minutes is required with your doctor to accurately assess and diagnose you. Yet according to the 2016 Medscape Physician Compensation Report, the most common average time frame doctors spend with patients in 13-16 minutes. Granted, a hospital or clinic visit will not require that all of your interactions with your doctor be face-to-face, yet still, the hope is that your given the attention you need. 

One of the reasons why doctors give for spending so little time with patients is that high patient volumes demand that they keep visits brief. Your care, however, should not be compromised for your doctor's convenience. Doing so could result in mistakes such as a misdiagnosis or a prescribing error. A quick review of the time spent with your doctor (as documented in your medical record) might point towards that being the cause if you end up suffering from such troublesome outcomes. 

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Haberkorn & Associates
2055 Woodside Rd., Suite 155
Redwood City, CA 94061

Toll Free: 800-799-8410
Phone: 650-268-8378
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