HomeHealthMedicineWhy You (Yes, YOU) Need A PCP

Why You (Yes, YOU) Need A PCP

As you probably know by now, I practice family medicine. What you may not know is that family medicine is considered primary care, or more commonly your family doctor. Some of you reading this may be thinking to yourself, that’s weird, my primary is an internist. Let me explain. Primary care is basically the primary provider you go to for care. This includes family medicine, internal medicine, and paediatrics. If you’re still not sure if you have a primary care provider (PCP), here are two questions to ask yourself:

• Have you had a physical examination or check-up in the past year?

• Was that physical exam or checkup scheduled in advance (not in the emergency room or emergency room)?

If you answered yes to both, well done. If you didn’t, let me tell you why we need to change that. Every office, clinic or hospital you go to is part of a health care system, just like the schools in the city are part of the school system. Would you send a child to high school before elementary school? No? So why go to the hospital when you have a cold?

Like the school system, the health care system is designed to be used in a particular way. It is designed so that you have a doctor who knows everything about you. It’s designed to give you a place to go for checkups and anything that isn’t an emergency. It is designed so that you have a PCP.

But what if you never got sick in the first place? What if we could prevent it? That’s what primary care is all about. I enjoy all my patients, but I really like physical exercises for teens and young adults. Why? Because then I can help them build habits that will prevent them from needing diabetes or high blood pressure medications in the future. And it feels even better when I can help my elderly patients look and feel young by helping them manage their health. But it’s not just me, it’s a known fact that people with good primary care are healthier than people without a GP. Already convinced?

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If you need a PCP, just call your local family medicine or internal medicine and ask if they are taking in new patients. If you have one and haven’t seen it yet this year, make an appointment. Anyway, follow me on Facebook

(House calls with Dr. B), TikTok, Instagram and Twitter (@housecallsdrb) for more tips on living your best life. I’d also love to hear your questions for future articles!

Dr. Lance Braye, MD, MPH is a family medicine physician who practices in Prosperity, SC. He grew up in Walterboro, SC and attended Colleton County High School where he participated in band, football and track. He received his bachelor’s degree in biology from The Citadel, The Military College of South Carolina, before attending the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC). While at MUSC, he took a year away from medical school to earn his Masters in Public Health in Health Behaviors and Health Promotion. After graduating from MUSC, he completed his residency in family medicine at the Lawrence Family Medicine Residency in Lawrence, MA with a concentration in Health Systems Leadership. Professionally Dr. Braye is interested in finding ways to improve the health system for all, addiction treatment and nutrition. On a personal note, he enjoys sports, gardening, cooking and spending time with his wife Paris and their cat Obi.

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