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15
Changing Doctors
You may change your PCP when you need to, as often as you need to, for any reason, unless you are a
hospital inpatient. To change PCPs, use one of the same ways you used to choose your first PCP. Please
note the following:
• PCP changes are effective the same day if staying in the same network
• PCP changes are effective the first day of the next month if changing networks (for example, a
transfer request received anytime in March to another network will be effective April 1)
• Keep seeing your current PCP until the effective date of the transfer
Visiting Your Doctor’s Office
After you select your PCP, schedule an initial appointment so your doctor may learn of any previous
conditions and be better able to treat you if you need care. During this first visit, be prepared to
discuss your family and personal medical history.
Helpful ideas when you visit your doctor:
• Prepare a list of topics, health concerns and questions
• Talk openly about your overall health
• Be sure to bring along all drugs you take
• Make sure you find out how and when to receive care by learning:
— Medical center/doctor office hours
— When to schedule other checkups
— How to schedule same-day appointments for urgent medical conditions (if available)
— How to obtain medical care or advice if the office is closed
Your Role as a Patient
You and your doctor are both committed to your health. Your doctor will respect your choices, and it’s
important that you show him/her the same respect. When you work together, receiving proper
medical care is a much better experience.
A healthy relationship with your doctor can be harmed, however, if you fail to respect your doctor’s
ability to provide medical care. So it’s important to follow your doctor’s directions. Discuss any
concerns you may have in a respectful manner. Just as it’s your right to change doctors if you’re
unhappy, your doctor can decide to end your relationship.
Canceling Appointments
Some doctors may charge a fee for missed appointments or those not canceled 24 hours in advance.
Any charges resulting from missed appointments are your responsibility to pay. Your health plan does
not cover these charges. Ask your doctor about his or her policy.