Accessibility View Close toolbar

Informed People Make Healthy Choices

Being an informed patient is an empowering concept.1 In the modern healthcare marketplace, the doctor-patient relationship has become a two-way street. It's no longer a situation in which the doctor tells the patient what to do. Today, patients can be full partners in managing their care and well-being.2

What does it take to be an informed patient, one who can participate in a meaningful way and not be merely the passive recipient of the doctor's instructions and recommendations?

The first key is to identify a doctor - a chiropractor or family physician, depending on the circumstances - in whom you have confidence. Here are a few essential points to consider

  • The doctor has spent enough time with you on the first visit
  • The doctor has focused on you, and has not been distracted by all the other things happening in the office
  • The doctor has satisfactorily answered all your questions
  • The doctor's recommendations are clear, and you understand what the next steps are going to be


The questions you ask are not just to keep talking and capture more of the doctor's time spent with you. An informed patient does some preparation - some homework - before the actual office visit. The Internet offers a lot of valuable information on both chiropractic and medical treatment. And, it's important to remember that not all information is accurate and authoritative - consider the source of the "information".

  • Consider the author's background and affiliations
  • Consider the potential for bias
  • Is the site itself up-to-date - for example, are there "dead links" on the site


Do your best to evaluate the doctor's recommendations. First, what are the expected results? How quickly should you begin to feel better? Are there potential side-effects of the recommended treatment? What are the alternatives?

Alternatives may include other forms of therapy within the doctor's office and may also include consultation with another specialist. The main point is not to be left with a confusing array of choices, but to have enough information to go forward with a treatment plan that makes the most sense, both to your doctor and to you.

If a prescription is involved, make sure you write down the exact spelling of the medication and the exact dosage and frequency. Prescriptions are usually scribbled, and both doctors and pharmacists can make a mistake. Don't let your doctor simply hand you an illegible piece of paper. Insist on ensuring that you understand what is being prescribed, and be sure to ask your doctor about potential side effects, risks, and interactions with any other medicines you may be taking.

As in all relationships, the doctor-patient relationship is based on clear communication and mutual trust and understanding. You can help your doctor help you by being informed and participating in the decision-making process.

1Informed Consent. "Ethics in Medicine". University of Washington School of Medicine. http://depts.washington.edu/bioethx/topics/consent.html#ques1
2"Be an active healthcare consumer". Agency for Healthcard Research and Quality. http://www.ahrq.gov/path/beactive.htm




Multicare Health Clinic

3930 STADIUM DR
SIOUX CITY, IA 51106
Phone Number: (712) 276-4325

Get Directions

Location

Email Us

Office Hours

Monday:

8:30 am-6:30 pm

Tuesday:

8:30 am-6:30 pm

Wednesday:

8:30 am-6:30 pm

Thursday:

8:30 am-6:30 pm

Friday:

8:30 am-2:00 pm

Saturday:

Closed

Sunday:

Closed

Testimonials

  • "I wasn't able to use my hand the way I should. After working with Dr. Sneller and the physical therapy team, I can use my hand again."
    Henry H.
  • "There couldn't be a better physical therapy team in Siouxland! Not only did my knee feel so much better after six weeks, but I feel like I made new friends."
    Karla K.
  • "After my consultatin with the doctors at Multicare Health Clinic, I understand how to address my balance issues."
    Anna A.
  • "I now can go a full week without pain and headaches."
    Luke W.
  • "I'm now a believer now! I didn't think chiropractic could help my foot problems. But after meeting with Dr. Pistello and Dr. Dave for a few weeks, I'm feeling so much better!"
    Gino G.
  • "My company encouraged all of us employees to get screened at Multicare. I didn't know what to expect. It was easy and I learned so much. The orthotics they prescribed really help me to feel more stable and confident at work."
    Jim J.
  • "I'm a runner. When I wasn't able to run due to leg problems, I was devastated. But a consultation at Multicare Health Clinic identified the problem and after some adjustments, stimulation treatments and therapy, I'm running again!"
    Lisa L.
  • "I leave here feeling confident that I have the resources to manage my pain and live normally, and that's priceless."
    Alycen V.
  • "I wasn't able to use my hand the way I should. After working with Dr. Sneller and the physical therapy team, I can use my hand again."
    Ivy I.
  • "After my knee surgery I was asked where I wanted to do my physical therapy, I chose Multicare Health Clinic and I'm so glad I did! Dr. Steve and the therapy assistants (Sara and Megan) are fabulous! They know what they're doing and they all really seemed to care about my recovery. I'm feeling fantastic! I'll definitely go back again whenever I need therapy or adjustments."
    Sheri J.
  • "Being able to present my back pain to three different professions in one place and knowing that they are working together to make me better is very comforting."
    Charlie P.
  • "At night my right hand would go painfully numb at least 2-3 times where I could not sleep. Now, I don't have that pain and can get a full night sleep."
    Janet D.
  • "Not only is my pain level down to zero, but what I'm really thrilled with, is that I have normal feeling in my hands."
    Jill L.
  • "My shoulder and neck feel so much better. I now have the knowledge, motivation, desire and tools to keep up the exercises."
    Barb B.
  • "Dr. Sneller helped. I haven't been feeling dizzy anymore."
    Belinda B
  • "I'm so glad my sister referred me to Multicare! My elbow hasn't felt this good in a long time. Thanks to the great physical therapy team there."
    Ellen E.
  • "After an accident at work I didn't think I'd ever get relief from my aching shoulder. But, the doctors at Multicare gave me adjustments and physical therapy and now I feel normal again."
    Cliff C.