Your Doctor Retired: Now What?

Your Doctor Retired: Now What?
| by Dr Elena Borrelli

Since the start of the COVID19 pandemic it is happening more and more frequently. Doctors and other healthcare providers are retiring. So what happens if you get the notification that your healthcare provider is no longer available?

For many, getting the call that your doctor is no longer available results in a sense of panic. Whether this is a provider who you have known for years or recently met; you have formed some sort of trusting relationship with this person. You have entrusted this person with your personal medical information, your struggles, and your goals. So now you are expected to start all over. I often hear clients tell me, “my doctor can’t do this to me.” Because we rely on healthcare providers so much, we often forget that they have their own lives too, with struggles and goals as well. There are several reasons why a healthcare provider may be retiring or moving from a practice; such as career burnout, illness, or personal preference.

So What’s The Plan

So what now? Some medical offices will provide you with a referral to a new provider who you can transfer care to. If this happens, wonderful! However, remember this new provider may differ significantly from your past healthcare provider. In addition, while a referral is a nice option, this is not always the case. In recent years, especially since the emergence of COVID19, healthcare burnout and illnesses has resulted in a shortage of both primary care providers and medical specialists. You may face many challenges finding a new provider (even with a referral) that is currently accepting new patients, accepts your specific insurance policy, and is the best fit to manage your medical problems. It is also important to find a provider that you feel comfortable with and feel you can easily build a trusting relationship.

How Can A Private Patient Advocate Help?

A private patient advocate can help with finding and transitioning to a new provider. A private patient advocate can research to find a new provider that may be the best fit for you based on provider experience, specialty and your preferences. A patient advocate can also make the necessary arrangements including providing past medical records and creating a medical profile summary. In addition, a private patient advocate can help prepare for your upcoming appointment, making sure that you remember to ask important questions. If you prefer, your advocate can even attend the appointment with you.

A private patient advocate helps prevent you from falling through the cracks when your doctor or other healthcare provider retires. Your health and quality of life are important, remember to make them a priority. Pathway Patient Advocates can help find the care you need without delaying your care. Give us a call (947) 517-8395.