If you are suffering from any physical ailments such as nagging back pain, an unexpected rash, or a migraine headache, having a family physician as a contact can be a sufficient healthcare option for you. Medical emergencies do not require a family physician. You typically visit the emergency room or urgent care if there is a medical emergency. However, your primary source of care should start with physicians who specialize in primary care. A family doctor is a good source for primary care. There are many benefits to finding a center for family medicine.
1) Family Medicine Reduces Healthcare Costs
Using more primary care often saves money for a healthcare system. Scientific data suggests that adding one primary care physician, which includes family doctors, for every 10,000 people can lower hospital admissions, emergency room visits and surgeries by 5.5% and 11% respectively. Depending on the extent of your medical coverage, seeing a family doctor first can save you and your family money, relieving you of any additional costs you may have had to pay if you went straight to the emergency room.
One study looked at which of a host of services delivered lower costs, using 394 practices employing 20,000 physicians. Each practice chooses the measures they want to be judged upon from an extensive list. Only two measures associated with consistent significant reductions in expenditures for Medicare beneficiaries were found in this study. Reminders for patients reduce overall costs by $69.77 annually per patient. Reminders to physicians reduce overall costs by $29.31 annually per patient.
2) Your Center For Family Medicine Will Focus on Quality, Not Quantity
People live with their families in communities, and rarely do illnesses affect just one individual. Patients often visit doctors with family relatives, and this serves as an opportunity for family doctors to establish a bond with the entire family. Other avenues of healthcare focus more on the quantity of care, mainly how much medication patients should take. Family medicine operates the exact opposite way. When visiting a family doctor, a general understanding of your family’s situation at home will be developed. When a family doctor understands the dynamics that are in play with a patient, the quality of care will be administered.
The specific details of what is needed for treatment will become clear if a family doctor knows a patient’s preferences. For example, if there is a patient who needs to see a cardiologist, the physician who has seen this patient for years will be able to conduct a search for a cardiologist. The physician knows that cardiologists take a conservative approach to treatment, and that the patient prefers conservative treatments.
3) Family Doctors Treat Various Conditions
While yearly check-ups are services with family doctors, they are also capable of treating a wide variety of conditions. Heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, high blood pressure and cancer all fall under the specialties of a family doctor. One of the most exciting experiences a family doctor can have while in medical school is choosing the specialty they will practice. When a doctor chooses a specialty, he or she is basically choosing a specific identity to go along with their title of doctor. Many people confuse the specialties of family medicine doctors and doctors who practice general medicine. Many general medicine doctors do not undergo any residency training. With the help of residency training, family doctors learn how to perform minor surgical procedures. Examples include freezing a wart or draining an abscess.
4) Family Doctors Treat Patients of All Ages
Patients of all ages can get treatment from family doctors. This includes toddlers, young children, teenagers, young adults, middle-aged adults and the elderly. When patients discuss which kinds of doctors to see, there is often confusion between various medical practices. A doctor who takes care of only children is a pediatrician. An internal medicine physician takes care of adults. A family doctor is the combination of a pediatrician and an internist.
When you start seeing a family doctor, if you are comfortable seeing that physician, chances are likely you will see the same physician for many years and even decades. This is typical of family physicians. Regardless of how much a family physician costs you for each visit, how comfortable you are seeing a family doctor is what will matter most. Since they have training to treat a wide range of conditions, family doctors can treat patients for any length of time in their lives.
5) Family Doctors Record Personal and Family History
Often an overlooked piece of the puzzle, the recording of medical history for a single patient becomes a critical part of a doctor’s job. This is especially true for family doctors. Not only do they record your personal history with an illness or injury. But, they can also record the medical history of your family relatives. When determining what is causing setbacks for your own medical condition, family doctors can also compare your medical records to the records of a family relative. So, this way, they can see if there are any connections. For example, if a patient had cancer as a child, and the patient’s uncle also had the same cancer, then the family doctor will see that as a red flag. Genetic counseling and screening plans can be offered as a result of making this discovery.
Should You Find a Center For Family Medicine?
Finding a center for family medicine is a wise investment for you and your family to make. Family medicine is a flexible specialty. It allows people with different life and career goals to be influential on a grassroots level with preventive care. Family medicine can provide direct and continuous care for an entire family, and not just one individual patient.
Doctors who work at a center for family medicine work hard for their salary. Family doctors address the most common and most pressing needs of patients by practicing a wide range of medical subjects and specialties. Family doctors don’t just practice the depth of one specific medical field. Before you rush to urgent care, consider first the advantages that come with family medicine as your primary source of care.