Establishing a primary care physician as early on in life as possible is extremely important in order to have a baseline established and personal health history recorded throughout your life.
If you ever come under the care of one or more specialists, primary care physicians can coordinate with them and review their recommendations to make sure nothing ‘slips through the cracks,’ such as identifying prescribed medications that may affect other existing conditions or medications.
Primary care physicians also play a critical role in helping control chronic health conditions, such as high blood pressure, asthma and diabetes. If left uncontrolled, these health conditions can cause serious complications down the road, such as heart disease.
By keeping these conditions properly monitored and controlled, individuals can significantly decrease personal, as well as overall, healthcare costs.
Most importantly, by establishing a primary care provider early on in life, patients develop a greater level of trust and better relationship with their doctor. This is important, as patients need to be open about their health history and any sort of symptoms, in order for doctors to properly assess and treat their conditions. Without patient-provider trust, it is obviously more difficult for patients to be fully honest about their condition and factors that contribute to it.
Fortunately, Cone Health has an exceptional network of primary care physicians dedicated to educating and caring for individuals throughout the community in order to promote overall wellbeing and good quality of life.
Dr. Tom Pickard is a family medicine specialist at Brown Summit Family Medicine and member of Cone Health Medical Group. Dr. Pickard received his medical degree from University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine in 2005 and has been in practice for 10 years.