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Choosing a Family Care Provider as the Foundation for Your Health Care

Regardless of your age, it’s important to your health that you develop a relationship with a Primary Care Provider.

According to the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), “In this increasingly fragmented world of health care, one thing remains constant: family physicians are dedicated to treating the whole person. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focusing on integrated care. Unlike other specialties that are limited to a particular organ or disease, family medicine integrates care for patients of all genders and every age, and advocates for the patient in a complex health care system.”

Because of their extensive training, family physicians are the only specialists qualified to treat most ailments and provide comprehensive health care for people of all ages, from newborns to seniors.

In addition to diagnosing and treating illness, they also provide preventive care, including routine checkups, health-risk assessments, immunizations and screening tests, and personalized counseling on maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Family physicians also manage chronic illness, often coordinating care provided by other subspecialists. From heart disease, stroke and hypertension, to diabetes, cancer and asthma, family physicians provide ongoing, personal care for the nation’s most serious health problems.

Since a Family Practice Provider cannot be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, it is beneficial that you seek out one who works with a team to provide you with a medical home. A medical group that is a recognized “Patient Centered Medical Home” (PCMH) can give you that care. In addition, you want a team that offers early morning, evening and Saturday appointment options for your acute medical needs. FBN

By Cindy Wade

Cindy Wade is a medical practice administrator for Flag Family Care. Flagstaff Family Care serves Flagstaff and Sedona. For more information, call 928-526-4325 or visit us online at

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