Why have a family doctor?
There are many benefits to having a family doctor.
Family doctors or GPs (general practitioners) specialize in both sick care and proactive care. It is very important to have a doctor who has a good relationship with you and can answer your questions and address your concerns in a way that you trust; you can consider him or her your healthcare advocate.
Your family doctor:
- looks at the big picture
- knows you as a person
- knows your health history and
- cares about your health
Family medical histories are useful for the early treatment and prevention of most diseases and health conditions. Your family doctor will keep track of family histories and genetic factors and that can be lifesaving.
They also understand the many factors that make up one’s health looking at the big picture as well as the details.
In addition, your family doctor probably knows the community better and can provide you with the best and most convenient referrals when needed.
Family doctors are trained to assist with a variety of health issues and conditions for all age groups. They care for pregnant women, babies, children, teenagers, adults and seniors offering help and assisting with any illness, injury or health question.
And let’s not forget the huge benefit when a doctor cares for all family members. It makes life a lot easier when families encounter issues such as serious illness, substance abuse, hardship and injury. These can affect the whole family and having a family doctor who will understand and help you deal with the situation will be of great help.
Family doctors can help you prevent future illness and catch problems early before they get serious, patients with chronic diseases receive more appropriate care, make fewer emergency department visits and are hospitalized less often.
Even if you are a generally healthy individual, it’s important to maintain an ongoing relationship with your family doctor. He or she knows you and can support what you are doing to stay healthy, building on that relationship as you and your family experience life changes that can affect your health.