Welcome to summer— baseball season is here, and I love watching the Savannah Bananas round the bases at Grayson Stadium. But, what if I told you the Bananas wouldn’t have a manager this season? Yes, no Tyler Gillum. While it’s hard to imagine a team forgoing its head coach’s expertise, many Americans reject that type of support in our own lives, by lacking a primary care physician (PCP).
As coaches are critical to a team’s success, a PCP is critical to your health. Here’s why:
PCPs Provide Personalized Care
Coaches and PCPs are both trained to look at individuals holistically. We analyze your full healthcare journey to create a plan to meet your goals, even if they’re not specifically health-related. For instance, are you learning to scuba dive? It’s time to get that blood pressure under control.
Research shows adults with PCPs are more likely than those without to receive “high-value” services including diabetes checkups, regular cancer screenings, and counseling.
PCPs Are More Affordable
PCPs can also save you money, by directly treating patients who don’t require specialists. In fact, Americans with PCPs have 33% lower healthcare costs than those who only use specialists.
PCPs Know Your Health History
Knowing our patients’ complete health history enables us to address problems upfront. We excel at working with patients to prevent, diagnose, and treat chronic diseases, which require consistent care. For instance, I know to test my older patients annually for chronic kidney disease, an often asymptomatic illness that, if undetected, can be fatal. Unfortunately, many only see a doctor when their illness becomes dire. PCPs actively work to make your healthcare experience stress-free. I started using a new technology called the “Clover Assistant Application,” created by tech-driven Medicare Advantage company Clover Health, that provides the most relevant, up-to-date health records at the point of care. Now, patients don’t have to struggle with tracking down test results or remembering their prescription dosages. So, stop waiting and start prioritizing your health. Find a PCP so that you can stay in the game and cheer on the Bananas—or your lesser team of choice.