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Do You Need a Family Doctor?

Posted Oct 14 2008 4:59am
I read an article yesterday advocating for Family Practice Physicians as a critical piece of the healthcare reform puzzle. I happen to agree. We all need a central coordination point for our healthcare. In the medical community, this is known as the "Medical Home". Your family practice doctor, also called primary care physician should be the one you see first for any condition, and more importantly for preventive care. Your physician is not to be seen only when you become ill. One of the main issues with today's healthcare system is that it is fragmented. We see a specialist for every different illness we have. In this case, you are the only central point of coordination, potentially leaving gaps in care or missed issues. The family physician needs to evaluate your conditions, assure you are being cared for according to national practice standards and make referrals IF necessary. All information obtained through a specialist referral should be channeled back to your primary care physician. This assures someone has "The Big Picture" of your care and can put together the puzzle.
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