Do a quick search for your condition/symptoms on the search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing.
Usually there are forums, articles and blogposts that discuss on different kinds of illness. These are done by people suffering from the illnesses and most likely have recovered from it. You will be able to find testimonials and real-life experience of how they coped with the illness.
Once you have found articles that matches a majority of your symptoms, you are able to shortlist what specialists you could approach. This saves valuable time and money as well.
You save on travelling and consultation costs.
Do a background check on their credentials.
You can contact the national hospital, medical healthcare centre or clinic to check and verify their credentials. Also, you can visit the SMC or singhealth’s website to check for conditionally registered researchers.
In addition, you can view their medical profile, services, past awards and accomplishments.. Also, you can read their biography that covers the history of their medical career which may include their academic achievements since medicine school(before they can practice officially). They are filed in different groups based on their speciality & careers.
Specialist Referral Through Relationships.
You can seek your family, friends or relatives for a referral. They may have undergone successful treatment and are impressed with a particular specialist. This specialist may help to solve your medical problems. This may work well for some people.
Do not randomly pick one for a specific illness.
Do not choose a neurologist for a renal problem. You should be seeking a nephrologist instead. Or do you have a sleeping problem?
There are many different medical terms for every specialist. Be aware of your problem and choose the suitable type of specialist. There are many types of specialists such as general surgeon who does general surgery and internists that handles internal medicine.
Organization of the clinic/office
Check the arrangement of the clinic. A properly kept or messy clinic is a rough gauge on the their way of dealing with patients. The registration and waiting time is also a good gauge on the organization of the clinic. If you are waiting for hours and there are not many people in the clinic, you may want to switch over.
Are you always unable to book appointments as the clinic has no slots for you? Are they always closed at certain hours?
Your Insurance Plans
Are you able to cover your medical fees through Medisave, Medishield or your insurance policies? You must do a research so that you will not be bearing unnecessary medical fees.
Be aware of the their communication skills at first meeting.
Their style of communication is critically important to a patient. Good communication brings about trust. Patients will be able to confide their medical issues with maximum disclosure, not hiding a problem because of embarrassment.
Choose one that is similar to your age
They will understand your problems better because they may have the same level of communication as you. They understand trends in your generation and will able to understand your conditions better.
Follow your instinct.
Do you feel comfortable while talking to the specialist? No? It could be a big sign that you should seek treatment from another specialist.
Be aware of details & deadlines.
What time do they operate? Call their telephone to check. The doctor may not be available at certain timings due to work shifts. [For foreigners, please dial +65 before a phone number]
Are they opened on ph, saturdays or sundays? Or do they operate on weekdays only from Monday to Fri?
Do they open from 830/900 and stop at 1230 to 1400?
These are the details you must be aware of before visting a specialist.