What do you mean by 26 seconds? I thought the appointment was fifteen minutes! Think back to the time you’ve spent in a doctor’s office. Once they walk you through the door to the sterile quiet office the nurse asks you the standard questions and tip taps her fingers against the key board. Then after some time the doctor enters, a few pleasantries are shared and then they ask you “So whats going on?”
This is your time to explain you condition. Since you have a maximum of 26 seconds you must have your ducks in order. If you don’t you might be leaving with regretful feelings, so make your seconds count. As human creatures our attention span is only so long, to make the most of these moments, be prepared and stick to facts.
To make these seconds more valuable make sure you write the doctor an email explaining your situation. If you would like more information on what to include in this email, click here. You should also write up a worksheet to guide you in the meeting. On this sheet have a bullet list of the important questions you want to ask. You will also want to bring a copy of this email in case your doctor has not read it yet.
How do I prepare for these 26 seconds?
Go over your medical history and records to find the information you believe is most important and write them down.
Document the signs and symptoms you’ve experienced, if you have enough time before your doctor’s appointment create a log of these conditions to determine patterns. Try to figure out if any of your lifestyle choices are contributing to your health issues.
Create a worksheet with bullet points detailing the most important aspects of your condition.
Rehearse with friends and family to see if your message is coming across correctly. Get out your smart phone and record yourself talking to see if you can see how to improve your communication skills.