The modern age of medicine is both marvelous and amazingly complex. Organ specific specialists can perform miracles undreamed of 20 years ago. But people are more than just a collection of organs, and symptoms are seldom organ specific. That is why everyone needs a medical home to care for the whole person, body and mind...and to provide access to preventive medical advice and services, to triage between serious and worrisome but non-threatening symptoms, and to categorize serious problems into the appropriate organ systems for definitive care. For instance, back pain can be a symptom of stress or depression needing emotional support. Or it can be a muscle strain, needing nothing more than rest and hot packs. But it also might be a ruptured disc needing epidural blocks or surgery, or a kidney infection needing antibiotics. Other symptoms can be equally non-specific.
So you can see why everyone needs a primary care physician, a medical home that is the first stop in care and the guide to a confusing and complex medical system. Primary care with an electronic health record provides that single reservoir of information that allows detection of conflicting conditions or therapies and duplications of services that a physician working only on his distinct organ system might not recognize. Finally, in the age of care measurement, the primary care record becomes that check-point for quality assurance programs that make sure you receive the best care possible and spend your insurance dollars as efficiently as possible. A well functioning, efficient medical care system depends on primary care. That’s what we do.