5 Reasons to Have a Primary Care Doctor
Our health is such a personal matter, right? It can be hard to work up the nerve to discuss it with close friends and family—much less someone in a doctor’s office. That’s why it’s so important to find a primary care doctor you like and trust. Over time, you’ll get to know one another, and you’ll feel comfortable talking about things as they come up. Plus, the earlier you two can identify potential health issues, the easier they usually are to treat.
Knowledge is power—especially when it comes to your health. And even if you’re usually healthy, a $0 yearly visit is a great way to stay connected with your doctor. (Most plans offer this visit at $0. If you have insurance through your employer, double-check your benefits before you schedule an appointment.)
In case you need more convincing, here are 5 reasons it’s good to have a primary care doctor.
- They can treat a wide range of issues. A primary care doctor is trained to help you deal with everything from the flu and back pain to uncovering serious illnesses like cancer and diabetes. And they’ll have suggestions for specialists if you end up needing extra care.
- They want you to be your healthiest self. Your primary care doctor wants to be your partner in sickness and in health. Want to quit smoking or lose some weight? Need support with alcohol or drug use? Feeling anxious or stressed out? Your doctor’s on call to be there for you.
- They will coordinate your care. Your primary care doctor is the point person who will guide you through the health care maze. They can connect you to a specialist, will stay on top of your medicines and supplements to be on the lookout for any interactions, and will answer any questions you have about your care.
- They will help you with routine screenings at every stage of life. Your doctor will know when you need a mammogram or colonoscopy and will also test your blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol and more. Serious illnesses like high blood pressure, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes and some early stage cancers may have no symptoms. So there may be no way to tell you might have an issue until your doctor screens you for them. Detecting these things early gives you an edge for successful treatment and cure.
- They can save you time. Once you’re an established patient, it’s usually easier to get in for an appointment. And instead of combing the Internet to look for specialists and symptoms, you’ll have a trusted expert to see for advice.
Need help finding a doctor?
Click here and then click Go under Find Doctors, Pharmacies, and More. You'll be able to search for doctors, dentists, medical facilities, pharmacies, specialists and other providers that participate in your plan. You can search using details like how close they are to your zip code, languages they speak, gender and office hours. You can also click Find Care on the Florida Blue mobile app.
Once you choose a provider, you can click Add to My Providers to save their name and contact information for quick access next time you need it.
If it’s not a life-threatening emergency, you could save time and money by choosing an urgent care center instead of the ER. Learn more here.
Filed under: Education