Advocating for your health
Advocating for your health can be hard, especially when receiving news of a new medical diagnosis. This can include a diagnosis of any health condition that requires some type of treatment and/or management. Learning more about your diagnosis and options will help you receive the care best for you and your needs.
What is a second opinion?
A second opinion is a review of a diagnosis, treatment options, or management plans by another independent doctor. Either you or your doctor can start the process for getting a second opinion. Second opinions allow for you get another perspective to make sure that you are getting the best care possible. Your doctor will not get offended if you ask for a second opinion. However, if you feel like your doctor doesn’t want you to get a second opinion, you have every right to still ask and get one.
Why should I get a second opinion?
Getting a second opinion is one important way you can advocate for your health. There are many reasons why you might seek a second opinion. One reason to get a second opinion is to have another doctor confirm your diagnosis to protect yourself from being misdiagnosed. It is estimated that about 12 million adults are misdiagnosed each year in the United States. Being misdiagnosed can be harmful to you, especially if you don’t actually have a specific health condition that requires further treatment.
A second reason to get a second opinion is that there is more than one “right” option for treatment or management. Second opinions allow for you to hear all your options that will allow for you to decide which option is best for you.
Will getting a second opinion cost me anything?
If you have health insurance, the cost of getting a second opinion depends on the insurer. Sometimes health insurance will not cover the cost for getting a second opinion. However, many health insurance companies do cover the cost and sometimes will even insist that you get another opinion. This is especially true if treatment will be expensive. If you don’t have insurance, talk to your doctor about options for getting a second opinion.
Getting a second opinion is one important way for you to advocate for your health. Don’t wait to start advocating for your health, take control today and find a healthcare provider near you.