Facing cancer is a scary endeavor, and it is, unfortunately, something that many people have to do at some point in their lives. It doesn’t matter if you’re searching for top-rated cancer surgeons in Los Angeles or NYC, making sure you have the best healthcare team on your side as you go through this journey to beat cancer is a must.
According to the American Cancer Association, “when you find out you have cancer, there are many things to think about and many decisions to make. Most people with cancer are not experts on cancer treatment. You may not feel like you have the time, energy, or resources to figure out how and where to get the best cancer care. You might need some help.”
Saying you might need some help is an understatement – you will most definitely need some help. The first step in getting that help in finding a top-rated cancer specialist, here’s how to do it.
First, find a reputable hospital
Before anything else, you need to find a hospital that has a surgeon on staff who works specifically with your specialty. You can find all of this information online nowadays, or you can ask around within your community. You can even utilize social media as a tool and make a post asking for advice on the top hospitals in your surrounding area.
People love to share their experiences, so all you have to do is get the conversation started one way or another. A major part of choosing a hospital is reviewing the surgeons on staff. On the hospital website, you’ll see the long list of doctors that they work with. You’ll be able to narrow it down by specialty and see how many years of experience each surgeon has within his or her field.
A great tool for hospital searching is the Joint Commission’s Quality Check. You can search on the Quality Check database by inputting the name of the hospital you’re considering or even just searching for quality top-rated medical facilities with your zip code or city.
Consider your insurance provider
Obviously, this is an important step. You’ll need to find a hospital or medical facility that is covered by your specific insurance plan. This might narrow your options down greatly, so try to do this before anything else. You can typically find out if a doctor is a part of your health plan by visiting the hospital website or checking directly with your insurance provider.
Consult, consult, consult
Once you have found the hospital and researched surgeons within that hospital that fit within your insurance plan, you’ll want to set up a consultation period. Depending on the type of cancer you have and how far it has progressed, you might have to act quick. But whatever you do, try not to settle. During your consultation, you need to feel comfortable with the surgeon and you should start to develop a sense of trust.