With the new additions of Tanya R. Bogle, MD and John Sosa, MD to our primary care team, we thought we would talk about the benefits of having a primary care provider, and why primary care is important.
What is a Primary Care Provider?
Your primary care provider, or PCP, is usually the first contact and continuing of care for undiagnosed health concerns that a person may have. They are also the medical professional you will see for annual checkups, immunizations, and other preventative care. A PCP can be a medical doctor, a Physician’s assistant, or a Nurse Practitioner.
Your PCP will maintain a comprehensive network of referrals for services not covered under their umbrella. These can be imaging services, specific care needs, and hospital related services, to name a few.
The largest benefit of having a PCP is the coordination of Services. Since your PCP is the first point of contact, they can determine what the next steps are in the process to diagnosis and management. They will also coordinate any referrals to specialists or services needed. They will also make sure tests and procedures are not duplicated, and that every medication you are taking is compatible with each other, and absolutely needed.
Having a single point of contact that knows your medical history and behaviors is invaluable as well, especially when you are dealing with chronic conditions.
Choosing a PCP
Depending on what kind of health insurance you have, it may not be required for you to choose a PCP. It is best to start with your health insurance to see what kind of plan you have. However, you can still have a primary care provider, even if it is not required. Here are a few tips to help you choose a PCP:
- Check your Health Insurance- See who is in network on your plan.
- Referrals-Ask friends and family for a referral
- Schedule a Consult- Once you have one or a few on your list, set up a consult with their offices to talk with the Doctor and answer any questions you have. Here is a great list of things to consider when choosing a provider.
- Advocacy Groups- If you have a chronic condition, these are a great place to start for finding trusted professionals.
ForCare Medical Center offers a wide variety of conditions covered in our primary care clinic. A complete listing can be found by clicking here. We hope that you will consider ForCare in your primary care needs. We are committed not only to working with patients to find current treatments that will deliver the most impactful results, but also in working to develop new treatment options through clinical studies.
If you or someone you love is interested in participating in clinical studies, ForCare currently has enrolling studies for those seeking new treatment options. Qualified candidates who participate will receive study-related care at no cost and receive compensation for travel. To learn more and see how you or someone you love may qualify for a study, click here.
To set an appointment for our primary care practice, you can request an appointment online, or call us at (813) 960-2400.