Almost everyone gets sick or injured at times and needs help. But there are so many different types of doctors who specialize in all parts of the body. This can make it difficult to figure out who you should see.
That’s where a primary care provider (PCP) comes in. This is a medical professional who handles your general health care and refers you to a specialist when you have a more serious health issue. But that’s just one reason why you need a primary care provider. Here are five other important reasons.
You have a trustworthy professional in your corner
The health care system can be complicated to understand. It can feel overwhelming when you’re sick. But having a good primary care provider in your corner can make health care much easier to navigate.
When you find a good provider, they become an ally. They’ll advise you on everything from an ear infection to heart attack recovery. And when you need a specialist for a certain medical condition, they’ll find someone who can help you with the particular issue you’re having. Then, they’ll follow up to make sure you’re receiving excellent care.
Having a medical professional you trust also makes it easier for you to be upfront about how you’re feeling. That way, you get the care you need right when you need it.
You can prevent illness
Primary care providers do annual checkups, tests and screenings that you might not get otherwise. They may catch problems like high blood pressure, diabetes or even cancer before they get worse. Your primary care provider also gets to know you well. That means they might even spot a symptom or sign of an illness before you do because they can see the change in your condition.
You’ll save money
People with primary care providers are often healthier. But they also save a little more money. That’s because having a primary care provider usually helps you save on health care costs.
People who have regular primary care providers are less likely to visit the emergency room for something they can get treatment for from a primary care provider. They’re also less likely to end up in the hospital for serious health issues. That’s because they take care of health issues as they happen instead of waiting until they feel worse.
You’ll have coordinated care
If you have multiple health conditions or take several medications, coordinated care is a must. This means having one health care provider who knows your entire health history and current medical situation.
Your PCP can then work with other doctors to manage the different types of care you need. They know how one medication affects another and how a certain health condition you have might respond to another treatment. They can prevent you from making mistakes when it comes to health care, too.
A primary care provider can also help you improve your lifestyle if it’s harming your health. For example, imagine you have heart disease. They can help you come up with a plan for a healthy diet and exercise program to better manage that condition.
You’ll manage chronic health problems better
You may not realize it, but you don’t need a specialist for every health problem, especially if you have it under control. Diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis, asthma, high cholesterol, kidney disease, heart disease — if you have these conditions or others, your primary care provider can monitor them.
They’ll be able to write prescriptions for medicines that help. They can also give you lifestyle recommendations you can use to start feeling better. They’ll send you to a specialist if something changes or becomes serious.
Are you searching for a new primary care provider? Look no further than Bon Secours. We have helpful online tools available to connect you with the best medical professional to manage all your health care needs.