What Would You Want?


We are all patients.  Even the doctors in my audience still need to see other doctors.  Today’s post is more of a question.  What would you want in the perfect medical practice?  In other words, if you had a doctor for you and a your family then want qualities would he/she/office have?  For example:

  • Time with the doctor
  • Accessibility
  • Good personality
  • Friendly staff
  • Clean office with fresh coffee

Please leave as many thoughts as you want.  I want to get a feel of what my audience wants when they are patients. Forget all the limits by the insurance companies.  Dream big.

Douglas Farrago MD

Douglas Farrago MD is a full-time practicing family doc in Forest, Va. He started Forest Direct Primary Care where he takes no insurance and bills patients a monthly fee. He is board certified in the specialty of Family Practice. He is the inventor of a product called the Knee Saver which is currently in the Baseball Hall of Fame. The Knee Saver and its knock-offs are worn by many major league baseball catchers. He is also the inventor of the CryoHelmet used by athletes for head injuries as well as migraine sufferers. Dr. Farrago is the author of four books, two of which are the top two most popular DPC books. From 2001 – 2011, Dr. Farrago was the editor and creator of the Placebo Journal which ran for 10 full years. Described as the Mad Magazine for doctors, he and the Placebo Journal were featured in the Washington Post, US News and World Report, the AP, and the NY Times. Dr. Farrago is also the editor of the blog Authentic Medicine which was born out of concern about where the direction of healthcare is heading and the belief that the wrong people are in charge. This blog has been going daily for more than 15 years Article about Dr. Farrago in Doximity Email Dr. Farrago – [email protected] 

  12 comments for “What Would You Want?

  1. Mike Fuller
    November 14, 2014 at 3:36 pm

    I want a doctor who doesn’t put you down for reading something on the Internet and then questioning them about it. We don’t all sit around reading medical journals, but you CAN get good information or referenced academic articles and blogs from the Internet. Even medical journals are available on the Internet for a price. So don’t assume everything on the Internet is just garbage and urban legends.

  2. phil lavine
    November 13, 2014 at 4:09 pm

    I agree w/ most of these things above. But it was funny as I was reading this bit while at the dermatologists sitting mostly naked in a cold room, waiting……
    I find the waiting in various states of undress for any amount of time (I’ve been to several MDs in the last few months) frustrating and demeaning. And giving a history naked is just …. wrong….
    Why can’t the doc just usher the patient back into office — him or herself — take a hx w/ the patient clothed and then review, or document in, the record while pt removes what ever clothing is needed! A good way to use an emr while not interacting with the patient.

    • Madelyn
      November 17, 2014 at 11:32 am

      My nurses would use that time to “catch” me for phone calls and message. That would drive me nuts. I still preferred to talk to the patient 1st. I also liked to shake my patients hand. None of my doctors do that.

  3. Pat
    November 13, 2014 at 10:42 am

    1. Efficient lab services, be it point-of-care or send-out, with competitive pricing.
    2. A doc who knows how to say to the patients ahead of me, “we’ll cover those additional three problems on your next visit.”
    3. Good overhead music (not MUZAK, and no teenybopper radio – I’m talkin’ Beatles, Lyle Lovett, or Pink Martini. Mix it up!)
    4. A holding pen for children somewhere outside, or at least, earplugs.

  4. Jim Schlesinger
    November 12, 2014 at 7:02 pm

    that he knows what he is doing. I could care less about coffee, the appearance of the office or anything else. Just give me a smart doctor. And it is OK if he says “I don’t know what this is”

  5. Lawrence Kutner
    November 12, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    The five examples you give–OK, the first four, since coffee is intentionally irrelevant–are processes, not results. This is exactly the type of thinking that you bemoan when you mock hospital administrators and the like.

    When I visit a physician, I want to believe that my concerns are heard, valued and acted upon with competence and empathy. I want to feel that I’m seen as a whole person who’s engaged in life rather than as a host for a given pathology. I want to receive treatment that’s appropriate, effective and that I understand. I want to be seeing someone who’s comfortable saying, “I don’t know.”

    • Doug Farrago
      November 12, 2014 at 3:16 pm

      Coffee is NEVER irrelevant. How dare you, sir! 🙂

  6. Scott
    November 12, 2014 at 1:03 pm

    A correct diagnosis

  7. Gayle Mosher MD
    November 12, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Affability, availability and ability.

  8. George Voigtlander, MD
    November 12, 2014 at 10:33 am

    Clear explanations and instructions.

  9. November 12, 2014 at 10:04 am

    Fresh coffee???? Only my podiatrist offers coffee. Not my Primary Care nor any of the specialists I’ve seen. The rest, yes. That’s why I’ve stayed with him through five location changes so far. Brilliant man, and kind.

  10. Dave Fitzpatrick MD
    November 12, 2014 at 8:32 am

    I wish to be connected.

Comments are closed.