When you are sick or injured, you should seek care. However, this isn’t always easy. Every day, people put off going to doctor’s appointments for a range of reasons. If you’re in this situation, here are a few potential solutions to help you protect your health.
Why People Don’t Go to the Doctor When They Should
1. Lack of Understanding
Many people are unwilling to make an appointment if they think that their symptoms are minor and don't warrant medical attention. They might believe that their illness will pass on its own and doesn’t require prescription medications, or worry about wasting the doctor’s time.
If this sounds familiar, don’t put off appointments. Many serious injuries begin with seemingly benign symptoms. And if you do test negative for a condition, you’ll get the peace of mind of knowing the result.
When you’re sick, the fear of the unknown can be overwhelming. One study found that more than 60% of the respondents were afraid to learn about serious health problems, and thus avoided going to the hospital.
Other people fear that a diagnosis might lead to embarrassment or discomfort, such as a need for walking canes or hearing aids. However, these tools typically improve quality of life and provide long-term benefits.
3. Lack of Time
Some people skip doctor’s appointments simply because they don’t have the time. Many doctor’s offices are busy, and wait times can be long even with appointments. In some cases, taking a few hours away from work or other responsibilities isn’t possible, so people put off visits.
One solution to this problem is relying on a clinic that offers appointments on weekends or after-hours.
4. Concerns About Cost
Medical care can be expensive, and some people avoid doctor’s appointments because they don’t want to pay for treatment and consultations. Even with insurance, co-payments and deductibles can add up, leading people to avoid seeking assistance.
If you’re a senior or low-income individual and worried about this issue, programs such as Medicare and Medicaid are available to cover the cost of health services.
5. Lack of Transportation
Multiple studies have revealed that millions of Americans miss or delay medical appointments because they don't have reliable transportation. In fact, transportation challenges cause 25% of missed doctor’s appointments.
If you need to get to an appointment but don’t have a functioning car or access to public transit, non-emergency medical transportation is available to help.
If transportation challenges are keeping you from your doctor’s appointments, count on Agape Transportation Management for reliable, professional, and affordable assistance. Based in the Bronx, NY, this service provides non-emergency medical transportation to a variety of locations, including hospitals, nursing homes, and doctor’s offices in New York City and Westchester County. Their vehicles are wheelchair-accessible. Call (718) 585-2222 to request a ride today, or visit them online for more details.