One of the best ways to maintain your health is to see a primary care provider.
This physician, nurse practitioner, or physician assistant focuses on preventative care and maintaining your overall health, as well as the treatment of everyday injury or illness.
Through regularly scheduled check-ups, over time, your provider gets to know your medical history and understands what’s important to you. As you build a long-term relationship with a trusted provider, you become more comfortable talking about your health needs. This mutual relationship is very beneficial. As you may know, your best resource for health information and advice is your doctor – the person who knows you, knows your medical history and can easily recognize any changes in your health patterns.
As a result, your primary care provider can monitor health markers, such as blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Knowing when these key indicators change, and treating them sooner rather than later, is an excellent opportunity to prevent more serious disease or chronic illness.
Because they are more familiar with you as a patient, and when appropriate, your primary provider can refer you to specialists who meet your specific needs. Your primary can also help prepare you for that specific appointment, so time spent with the specialist is focused, productive and as comfortable as possible.
At Arnot Health, you and your primary care provider are a team. We believe that you can work together to maximize your health and well-being.
“How can I find a primary care provider?”
We believe that feeling comfortable and trusting your primary provider is the first step to ensuring a positive and beneficial relationship. There are many routes a person can take to start searching for the right primary care provider.
- You can ask your friends and others that you trust for referrals.
- You can ask your current physician for a referral if you are moving to a new area.
- You can ask for referrals through a health care system.
If seeking a referral from someone that you know personally isn’t a viable option, we encourage you to call our Health on Demand hotline for a list of Arnot Health providers accepting new patients, and for guidance in making a choice suitable to your needs.
“What kinds of things should I consider when making my decision?”
Once you’ve narrowed down the primary care providers that you may be interested in seeing, it’s important to ask yourself about specific considerations.
You may ask yourself:
- What are my current health needs?
- Do I prefer a male or female?
- Will communication be a challenge?
- Is the office staff friendly and will I feel comfortable in that environment?
- Is the office convenient to travel to?
- Is the primary care provider board certified?
- Who would I see if my provider is not available?
As you find a provider that meets your considerations, you’ll feel more comfortable starting your doctor-patient relationship.
“So, what do I do next?”
At Arnot Health, we suggest that you schedule an appointment with your top choice to go over your medical history, discuss your health concerns and determine if it’s a good fit. Once you’ve determined which primary care provider you’d like to work with, you can take the next step to actively maintain your health.