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Good medical care is something everyone needs. When injury or a sudden medical condition manifests, you need a reliable source of information to help you know what to do about it. This is especially true if the injury or illness requires long-term care. Since you aren’t a medical professional, you may not know what to do. The Partida Corona Medical Center is one institution that can provide such answers during critical medical emergencies. With an experienced primary care physician available, you can rest assured that you’ll be receiving world-class medical attention.

What is a Primary Care Physician?

With so many doctors setting up specialist practices these days, it’s easy to forget the ones that manage a broad range of illnesses and medical emergencies. Primary care physicians are the doctors that diagnose and manage numerous health conditions among the general population. If, say, you came down with a bug or developed a sudden allergy, your first visit will be to the emergency room. There, a primary care physician will offer the initial medical attention to alleviate the pain or symptoms of the condition causing distress. If the need arises, you can then be referred to a specialist.

All in all, primary care physicians are more like the jack-of-all-trades doctors, helping to address or manage a wide range of medical conditions like diabetes, bronchitis, pneumonia, or even fractures.

Many people prefer to see a primary care physician before moving on to a specialist. Because of their ability to address a vast array of medical conditions, a facility run by a primary care physician can be a one-stop shop for nearly all medical emergencies.

A family doctor (or general practitioner in some countries) used to be the equivalent of a modern-day primary care physician. These days, several other types of healthcare professionals can fulfill the roles of family doctors. However, many people say they experience better healthcare as a result of having a primary care physician address their key medical issues.

Becoming a Primary Care Physician

To be a primary care physician, one has to undergo years of rigorous training and study. 

In the US, this means attending four years of medical school after acquiring a four-year degree in another course. Depending on which path you took, you can either earn an MD (medical doctor) degree or a DO (doctor of osteopathy) degree upon graduating from medical school.

Residency is the next training phase for those physicians who wish to specialize in a particular area. Depending on which specialty the doctor chooses, it can range from three to seven years. During this residency, a doctor can choose to specialize in family medicine, pediatrics, or geriatrics, among others. Residents who complete any one of these specialties can become certified primary care physicians without advancing to do a fellowship.

A fellowship program enables the graduate of a residency program to specialize further in a particular medical area like ear, nose, and throat (ENT). Many such doctors decide to get board certification, a process that involves taking tough exams to test their knowledge of their specialty.

Why You Need a Primary Care Physician

It’s clear that there are benefits to be derived from having a primary care physician as your main source of solutions for your medical issues.

These benefits include:

1)You’ll Stay Healthier

There are studies to strongly suggest that seeing a primary care physician regularly leads to increased life expectancy. This may be because:

i)Primary care physicians provide preventive care: Prevention of diseases is usually better than having to undergo treatment for them. Even when the disease can be prevented, early detection could mean the difference between life and death. Primary care physicians can perform general checkups to screen for any disease or abnormalities. Usually, the earlier a condition is detected the better the outcome of its management.

ii) Management of chronic conditions: With access to a primary care physician, conditions like diabetes can be monitored regularly. This ensures that they are well-managed, thereby preventing complications like getting a diabetic foot.

2) Proper Guidance About All Health Issues

The healthcare system is one giant juggernaut, with numerous moving parts. Making sense of it all can be overwhelming if you don’t have a good grasp of it. If you need to see a specialist or want to know how a particular treatment will affect your health insurance policy, your primary care physician can offer valuable advice.

3) Reduced Healthcare Costs

Managing chronic conditions when they’re advanced can be very costly. Managing them when they’re still at an early stage is usually cheaper. For example, diabetes can be properly managed if it’s detected early. However, if left unchecked, it can lead to numerous complications like diabetic ketoacidosis and neuropathy, leading to amputations. Such conditions require a lot of treatment in the form of drugs and hospital visits. These can be very costly. On the other hand, a lifestyle change in someone that’s just had a diabetes test will help them save money in the long run by avoiding costly medical treatments.

Ultimately, a primary care physician is your best friend when it comes to having proper health guidance.