Blue Buzz: Have You Found a Primary Care Physician?

Do you have a doctor? Finding a primary care physician (PCP) is a crucial first step in using your health care coverage. Regardless of what kind of plan you have, a primary care physician (PCP) can help you navigate your health care. Think of them as your first point of contact – the main doctor who coordinates all your care. They’re a designated resource who knows you and your health history, and they can connect you with specialists when needed. PCPs are also one of your lowest-cost options for care. 

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Do you have a doctor?...Like, really. What’s their name? How often do you see them? Do they know your overall health situation? If not, then it sounds like you need to select a primary care physician…

Finding a primary care physician is a crucial first step in using your health care coverage. And it’s important to see that doctor regularly to start building a relationship.

Many people with a PPO health plan assume that they don’t need a primary care physician. But nothing could be further from the truth. Everyone needs one! Here’s why…

The health care system is complicated, right? Primary care physicians – a lot of people call them PCPs – help their patients navigate their health care. Think of your PCP as your first point of contact – the main doctor who coordinates all your care. They’re a designated resource who knows you and your health history – and can connect you with specialists when needed.

Now, you might be thinking… “I’m pretty healthy.” Good for you! A PCP can help you keep things that way.

They see patients whether they’re sick or well. To stay healthy, you need screenings for things like blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and even cancer. Your PCP can handle of those preventive health needs – as well as many non-emergency health issues. Think: common colds, rashes and allergies.

And studies show that people who have a PCP live longer, healthier lives.

They are also one of your lowest-cost options for care. Their office visits are less expensive than visits to specialists or urgent care clinics. And most health care plans cover their annual wellness exams at no cost.

Of course, we don’t always see sickness coming. When it does happen, you’ll be glad you already have a doctor. It’s easier to schedule an appointment when you have an established relationship. Plus, not all physicians are accepting new patients.

But the good news is – technology is making it easier than ever to see a doctor. Many of them are now seeing patients virtually.

Designating a PCP is important for you – but it’s also important to the overall health care system. There’s growing evidence that primary care plays a critical role in the future of health care – especially in a new approach called value-based care.

Spend some time designating a primary care physician for you and your family.

Insurers like Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas offer tools like Provider Finder, to help you locate a physician.

Selecting a primary care physician is a foundational first step on your health care journey. Take action today.

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