This week, we introduce a new 7 part series The Age-Appropriate Doctor’s Appointment: Making the Most of It. The series is brought to you by Dr. Mark Lachs, author of Treat Me, Not My Age: A Doctor’s Guide to Getting the Best Care as You or a Loved One Gets Older. Dr. Mark Lachs is a physician, scientist, and gerontologist at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City. His research has been published in the New England Journal of Medicine and the Journal of the American Medical Association, and he has appeared on The Today Show, NPR’s All Things Considered, and in many other national and local media outlets. His numerous honors and awards include a National Institute on Aging Academic Leadership Award and a Paul Beeson Physician Faculty Scholarship (the country’s preeminent career award in aging). He and his wife, Susan, a nurse practitioner, have three children and live in Connecticut.
Week 1: Get organized
Since the forces that have led to “the incredible shrinking office visit” are unlikely to end soon, and since we’re all getting older and need the best care we can get, the question is: What’s a boomer to do?
Answer: Plan accordingly. You wouldn’t go to your accountant, your lawyer, or even your hairdresser without a sense of what you wanted from the transaction; why would you be any less prepared for a visit to the doctor? Here are some tips to help you get the most out of what is increasingly likely to be a time-pressured encounter. Underlying every piece of advice is a simple edict: Get organized. The visit will be more productive for you and more efficient for your physician.