It is said that within a 25 miles radius of the Fort Mill SC area there are roughly 25 different oral surgeons to choose from.
So how can some body know the right one to choose.
From a docs perspective this is the thought process that goes through my mind when I'm making a referral.
#1 - asuming that all the specialists have EQUAL clinical skills for the referring procedure (sometimes that can be a big asumption to make though), one of the 1st things I consider is the personality of both the patient and the specialist. Lets be honest, some Docs have more laid-back, "nicer" chairside manners than others, and if possible I'd rather not send a say "nervous" patient to a specialist who usually has less patience, and vice versa. Also, I always ask myself before handing the referral slip, would I want to go see that specialist for that procedure if I needed it myself? If I wouldn't want that doc to do that procedure to me if I needed it, then why would I want my patients to see that doc for that procedure??
#2 - geography. If I as the refferring doc have the ability to send a patient to a specialist of equal ability/chairside manor whose office is say 5 miles from there home vs. say 20 miles from their home, well more often than not I'm referring them to the specialist that's 5 miles from their home
#3 - Insurance plans (a small consideration on my part) Especially if it's a medicaid patient I'm referring out to a specialist, not all specialists will take medicaid, so in that scenario that often influences where I'd make the referral
What I DON'T consider when making a referral
1) What did that specialist give me as a Christmas present last year/how many times has he/she taken me out to lunch/dinner recently
2) Cost (medicare patients excluded). I'm going to make my referrals on the basis of skill of the provider and personality of the provider
How do you learn about the specialist's chairside manner? Is it typical for a general dentist to go there every once and a while to observe procedures, etc?