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As Prescribed Blog



As Prescribed Blog

What's a PCP and why would I need one?

Fort HealthCare Fort HealthCare January 23, 2012 0 Comments Family Medicine

Choosing your medical provider is a personal choice that can have long-lasting implications. It’s like choosing to spend time with a trusted friend and advisor – one who knows all of your personal health information! Because of that, we at Fort HealthCare encourage you to get to know our providers BEFORE you make that decision. Not all doctors (nurse practitioners or clinicians) are created equally.

Doctor treating child with motherOf course we provide all of the basics: where they went to medical school, their specialties and interests, and where they see patients. However, there are so many other ways to get to know our providers. Many have detailed profiles, both in print and on video, that help you to know more personal information about that individual. Because the “Find A Doctor” directory is on our website, it is updated constantly and is the most current listing of providers at Fort HealthCare.

Primary Care Doctors Coordinate Your Care

Having a regular primary care physician (PCP) or family doctor can improve your health and your medical care experience. You’re likely to see this doctor first when you need a checkup or have minor symptoms or complaints. However, he or she does more than ease your sniffles and take your blood pressure.

A PCP’s responsibility is to:

  • Help you make health care decisions
  • Treat minor problems before they become more serious
  • Provide preventive care to help keep you well
  • Refer you when you need to see a specialist
  • Manage chronic conditions
  • Keep track of your medical records and health history

Studies show that patients who see the same primary doctor regularly experience:

  • Higher satisfaction with their health care
  • More coordinated care
  • A stronger doctor-patient relationship
  • Lower costs

You’ll also have better health in the long run. Your Fort HealthCare affiliated family or primary care doctor is trained to care for you through all the phases of life. Even if you see specialists for certain conditions, you should still have a PCP for your general health care needs. He or she will help you get the tests you need for your age and risk profile.

Study Highlights Features of High-Quality Primary Care
Americans with access to three key features of high-quality primary care have a lower risk of death, according to a new study. These features are comprehensiveness, patient-centeredness, and evening and weekend office hours, the University of California, Davis researchers said.