Questions to ask your doctor

It can be hard to remember all of the questions you want to ask your doctor or nurse during your appointments. Below is a general list that you may find useful as a guide.

At Diagnosis

• What is the name of my condition?
• Do I need further tests? What would they involve?
• What treatment is recommended?
• How long will my overall treatment take?
• Who do I call if I become unwell and is there a process I should follow?
• Where will I have this treatment – as an inpatient, outpatient, at home?
• What side effects may I experience?
• Will I need to take time off work/school or organise childcare?
• Are there any other treatment options?
• How do they differ from my recommended treatment?
• Would I have to pay for these or move to another treatment centre?
• Am I eligible for clinical trials here or at another nearby treating centre?
• Will I lose my hair?
• How will it affect my physical ability?
• Will my fertility be affected?
• What allied health professionals are available to help manage my care and how do I access these?
- Physio
- Dietitian
- Social Worker
- Chaplain
- Counsellor
• Do you have any dietary recommendations?
• Can I use complementary therapies?
• If I can’t work, am I eligible for financial assistance?
• Are there any other community support organisations that I may benefit from?

At Routine Appointments

• Are there any changes to my treatment schedule?
• Where will this treatment take place?
• How long will this treatment take?
• What are the side effects?
• When am I due for my next investigation? (e.g. CT scan)
• Do I need a prescription?
• When is my next appointment?

Remember to tell your doctor or nurse about any symptoms or side effects you are experiencing.

Things to consider

• Do I (or my carer) need a sick form?
• Do I need any Centrelink forms completed?
• Am I entitled to a hospital carpark discount?
• Am I entitled to any government rebates for transport or accommodation (PTAS)?
• Do I need a PTAS form to be completed?
• Do I need forms completed for insurance purposes?

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