It’s recommended that everyone visit their doctor at least once each year for an annual physical exam.  When problems or potential illnesses are caught early on, many times they can be solved before they become major – saving you time, money, and helping you feel your best.  Here are a few things you can do to prepare before you visit the doctor to get the most out of your appointment:


Family Medical History Update

Whether you are seeing a doctor for the first time, or have been making annual appointments with the same doctor for years – take some time to make sure your family medical history is up to date.  This information helps your doctor.  Include any of your own surgeries, changes to medication and any diseases or illnesses of family members.

Ask About Medication Alternatives

Sometimes health insurance companies won’t cover certain medication, even if they had in the past and you’ve been taking them for years.  Your doctor may be able to recommend alternative medications that will do the same thing but that will be covered under your insurance.

Consider Getting Blood Lab Work Before Your Appointment

If you call a head to your doctor’s office before your appointment to ask if you will be having any blood lab work done, they may be able to give you the script in advance of your appointment.  This means you can get the lab work done and then talk about it at your physical appointment, instead of waiting to hear about the results afterward.


The Times Union published a full story with even more tips for preparing for doctor's appointments on Saturday, February 2nd.