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What To Expect At Va Doctor Appointment

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Just noticed there are posts on what to expect for C&P exams, but not for regular VA doc appointments. Actually, I see some information added to individual messages, but to be honest, Va medical appointments 'ARE different!'

Case in point, VA calls me to set up annual checkup appointment, the VA told me I had to do blood tests in advance in order to get the appointment.

Private doc sees the patient, then has patient do blood tests 'afterwards', saying I'll send you the results or call you if something else is up.

Va doc or np types about 15 minutes first, then physically checks or 'sees' patient 3 minutes and rushes out..

Private doc sees paitent, asks how its going, etc, while talking directly to patient, checking patient over, not touching a single computer/keyboard.

Hope that makes sense...guess I've been thinkin about upcoming hearing appointment. Anyone got advice ? Hope to get my tinnitus confirmed and find out if my hearing loss is real.

Thanks for your thought,


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  • HadIt.com Elder


when I call to make an appointment, they tell me if I need to do blood workup/labs a week in advance and they schedule the appointment for the doc. The Miami VAMC is pretty efficient, but it took me a while to understand how they operated. Actually my PCP is rather good good, but real stingy on getting an MRI. I would like to add that they see me every three months, my primary that is.


Edited by tagandbag
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My PCP appts are a joke. I haven't had any of my routine blood work done in close to a year. (Some longer). Luckily, my recent cardiology visit caught this and had ordered all of my bloodwork. My PCP never examines me. He only asks me questions, so the appt lasts about 5 minutes max. I end up speaking to the nurse longer than the doc. I ask for all of my meds refills to be redone; they never are.

What can I say.....it's Dayton. They suck.

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I can't remember the last time I saw a primary care doc. I've had several dozen eye & endo appointments in the last year. No lab results till the next visit, "coming soon" online, ha!

Everyone seems to be in a rush, but if a person has a good list of questions/concerns the docs have taken each issue seriously.

I always try and bring a list of concerns, anything from med refills, to aches and pains. If I don't I am sure to forget a concern.

Portland VA has a lot of doctors in training from the local medical hospital, so most of young docs are very helpfull.

I'm lucky to live in the Northwest.....Eric

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For me,,, when I am seen by a provider, I expect no less than their full attention. Once they start typing on that computer,,, I inform them that I am the patient and not the computer (then I smile). Still, they know I am serious.

I also do a "recap" with my providers. That way, we are on the same page as to the "plan" of my care. So,,, any lab work, refills, etc. are correctly entered into the computer.

I always bring paper and pen with me. My motto, "the best advocate for yourself IS yourself," and "make yourself rememberable by smiling and being firm."


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  • HadIt.com Elder

I get in to see my Primary Care Physician every three months.

They request that you come in two hours before your appointment, to go by the lab for your blood and urine anaylisis.

Then the "office nurse" does the weigh-in and BP and my PCP actually asks me about my aches and pains, about whether I'm resting well at night, how my MDD is affecting me, then he does a pretty thorough number with the stethoscope and the thumping of the belly and the feeling of the lymph nodes, etc., etc.

Then he discusses my lab results (last time he fussed at me because my blood level of my codiene wasn't high enough and it wasn't controlling my pain.....of course I have to drive to my appointment so I slack off the day before.....).

All in all, I can't complain. He always sees that I get in to see any specialist that I and my Wife (RN) thinks that I should. Sets up my vision screening every 10-12 months, my ortho appointments, etc.

Of course I understand Hindu pretty good, so that helps :D .

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