Many group practices allow this because they understand it is important to find a good "fit" and they know that people respond better to someone they can relate to comfortably. Other groups do not allow this kind of change, so the first thing to do is inquire of the staff if changing within the group is acceptable there. Most doctors understand this concept and welcome this flexibility.
Secondly, you could have restrictions inflicted by your health plan. If you have an HMO or a plan that requires a primary care provider, provisions are generally in place to change when things aren't working for you. But, you would need to check with their customer service department to find out for sure.
Other than these two factors, I know of no reason why you shouldn't switch to a doctor you are more comfortable with. The advantage to staying within the group is that you records are already there so it is easy for the new doctor to view the history.
The answers in online forums are for information only and are not intended to substitute for medical advice and care. Please see your personal health care provider for further evaluation of your individual case.
Debbie Miller, RN