More than 200,000 primary care physicians (PCPs) care for over 300 million people in the United States. Primary care includes family and internal medicine, along with nurse practitioners, pediatrics, and community health. PCPs are the first point of contact for your care and are your first line of defense against illness and chronic disease.
An internal medicine physician is trained to prevent, diagnose, and treat diseases in adults. Primary care specialist Samuel I. Fink, MD, provides individualized care to help you maintain wellness and is your best choice for internal medicine in Tarzana, California. In this blog, he aims to increase awareness of the importance of primary care.
What are primary care physicians?
Primary care physicians ensure that you get the right care, in the appropriate setting, by the most appropriate provider. Catching and treating problems early is the cornerstone of preventive care. That’s why it’s important to see your primary care physician even when you’re feeling great and in excellent health.
Routine checkups give your PCP the opportunity to track your health and head off potentially serious health issues before they take hold. Primary care physicians are trained to detect subtle clues about your health that may otherwise go unnoticed.
What does a primary care physician do?
You can develop a long-term relationship with your primary care physician, who helps you recover when you’re sick and makes wellness recommendations so you stay as healthy as possible. Think of your PCP as your health and well-being partner.
Primary care physicians address all general physical and mental health concerns. Your PCP can answer your questions and concerns about your general health and performs routine checkups where they learn about your:
- Current health status
- Personal medical history
- Family medical history
- Any stressors or daily challenges
Your partnership with your PCP is a collaborative one, with you both sharing responsibility for your ongoing health.
What happens at routine checkups?
Routine checkups help you stay on top of your health. Your PCP:
- Performs screening tests to detect or monitor health problems
- Provides educational information to help you make health choices that prevent disease
- Ensures your vaccinations are up-to-date
- Treats any health problems that arise
- Tracks your treatments for chronic health problems
- Answers any questions you may have about your health
Checkups play an important role in tracking changes to your overall health. When you develop a relationship with a primary care physician, you can expect consistent and efficient care.
How can primary care help me?
While specialists focus on one area of your health, your PCP manages your overall health, whether it’s treating you when you have an acute illness, referring you to a specialist, or screening for potential health problems.
Your primary care physician provides comprehensive care and helps you stay healthy throughout all phases of life. A relationship with your PCP can help you prevent illnesses and diseases from developing or progressing, reduce the need for hospitalization, and teach you how to lead a healthier lifestyle.
Additionally, studies have shown that having a primary care provider reduces your risk of premature death by nearly 20% vs. seeing only specialists. So maintaining a relationship with your PCP can save your life.
Dr. Fink is an internal medicine specialist who is dedicated to providing exceptional primary care. Give our office a call to schedule a visit with Dr. Fink, or request an appointment online today.