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Choose wisely for good health

From AARP Oregon


Consider this scenario: You go to the doctor for a routine annual physical, and the next thing you know the doctor has ordered a half dozen diagnostic tests. Everything turns out normal so you figure, that’s great!

But is it?

For the first time, the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation (ABIM) has come up with guidelines that can help both providers and patients decide if therapies and tests are a good idea through the Choosing Wisely Campaign.

“Too much testing is being done that isn’t needed, that doesn’t work,” says John Santa, M.D., who directs health ratings for Consumer Reports. Before going to work for Consumer Reports, Santa worked at Oregon Health & Science University.

Choosing Wisely is focused on encouraging physicians, patients and other health care stakeholders to think and talk about medical tests and procedures that may be unnecessary, and in some instances can cause harm.

Consumer Reports will develop and disseminate materials to patients through large consumer groups such as AARP to help patients engage their physicians in these conversations and ask questions about what tests and procedures are right for them.

We all have a role to play in stopping expensive treatments that cost money and may not improve your health. Choosing Wisely is an important tool to make sure you are getting the right care at the right time, and care that is safe and tailored to you.