Primary Care Physician can be the quarterback of your health
Louisville, Ky. (January 13, 2014)—As a new year begins, it’s a time when many reflect on the things they’d like to do to better themselves. Whether it be to adopt a healthy diet, or begin an exercise regimen, KentuckyOne Health wants to encourage those with resolutions about their health to start with a primary care physician.
A primary care physician (PCP) is the main provider in overall health and offers preventative care on an ongoing basis. A PCP is well versed in their patients’ physical and mental health, as well as family and personal medical history, making them best equipped to provide medical advice that can help treat and prevent illness.
“It’s important to think of your primary care physician as the quarterback of your health,” said Tamea Evans, MD, KentuckyOne Health Primary Care Associates. “Whether it is keeping track of your health numbers or giving advice for starting a new diet or exercise regiment to improve overall health, they are the provider that is most knowledgeable about you as a person and a patient.”
Individuals who see a PCP on a regular basis will be able to create an overall healthy lifestyle plan, including an exercise goal and dietary changes. Marking the first of the year with a regular visit to the doctor is a great way to kick-off a new year.
Once a year, a visit to your physician will assess changes to your family medical history; habits such as smoking, drinking, exercise, etc.; vital signs like blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate and temperature; and a top-to-bottom physical overview including the health of the lungs, heart, extremities, abdomen and more.
Not only will regular visits with a PCP ensure the doctor’s full understanding of the patient’s health, but they will also help the patient to better understand and manage his/her own health. Together with a primary care physician, a patient will better learn their important numbers like target weight, current and ideal body mass index (BMI) number, cholesterol level, blood pressure and more.
“Your primary care physician can help you steer the ship in the right direction, but you have to be well versed in your own personal health factors and manage them on a day-to-day basis,” said Dr. Evans. “Your physician can recommend a healthy diet, but only you can make the choice to pass on the fried foods and sugary snacks.”
Regular trips to the primary care physician can also help keep medical costs down. Under the ACA, a regular physical is often fully covered with no deductible or out-of-pocket cost. What’s more, a PCP has more resources and options for care outside of a visit to the emergency room.
At the exam, physicians recommend bringing up any and all concerning ailments, including unusual pain, changes in weight, lumps/bumps and more.
For more information about how a primary care physician can help manage and improve overall health, or to find a doctor, visit www.kentuckyonehealth.org or call 502.589.3027.
About KentuckyOne Health
KentuckyOne Health, the largest and most comprehensive health system in the Commonwealth, has more than 200 locations including, hospitals, physician groups, clinics, primary care centers, specialty institutes and home health agencies in Kentucky and southern Indiana. KentuckyOne Health is dedicated to bringing wellness, healing and hope to all, including the underserved. The system is made up of the former Jewish Hospital & St. Mary’s HealthCare and Saint Joseph Health System, along with the the University of Louisville Hospital and James Graham Brown Cancer Center. KentuckyOne Health is proud of and strengthened by its Catholic, Jewish and academic heritages.
Importance of Primary Care
- When an individual has a primary care provider, he or she has more resources and options for care.
- Individuals who see a primary care provider on a regular basis will be able to create an overall healthy lifestyle plan, including an exercise goal and dietary changes.
- A routine visit to a primary care provider is recommended on an annual basis. At these visits, the physician will ask explore:
- Family medical history
- Habits, such as smoking, drinking, exercise, etc.
- Vital signs including blood pressure, heart rate, respiratory rate, and temperature
- Top-to-bottom physical overview, including examining the lungs, heart, extremities, abdomen and more.
- At the exam, physicians recommend bringing up any and all concerning ailments, including unusual pain, changes in weight, lumps/bumps.
- Routine examinations help patients fully understand their health, such as their target weight, BMI number, cholesterol level and more.