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Choosing a New Primary Care Physician

primary care physician

If you were to hire someone to say, do your landscaping or put an addition on your house, you would most likely research their qualifications, conduct an interview or even check references to ensure you made the best and most informed decision. The same goes for finding the right person to care for your health. Finding a new primary care physician (PCP) is a significant decision that can significantly impact the quality of your life, especially if you are a senior.

As you age, personal goals and areas of concern often change. Therefore, you need to feel comfortable with your doctor and be able to openly communicate regarding aspects of your health and life. I discuss the importance of this relationship in the following video, along with specific ways to choose the right PCP and get the most out of your doctor’s appointments.

As you will see in the video, medical care for seniors often requires special expertise. Whether it’s treating chronic illnesses or managing long lists of medications, geriatricians have the experience and training to meet the specific needs of seniors. These physicians generally complete a fellowship, which is advanced training for one or more years and earn certification from the American Board of Physician Specialists.

Lastly, a PCP should not relegate all medical issues to aging. Instead, physicians should encourage seniors to lead comfortable and fulfilling lives – a message that resonates in the following video.           

Robert Schreiber, MD's picture

About the Blogger

Medical Director of Evidence-based Programs, Hebrew SeniorLife

Dr. Schreiber is Medical Director of Evidence-based Programs at Hebrew SeniorLife and Medical Director of the Healthy Living Center of Excellence, an organization funded by the John A. Hartford Foundation and the Tufts Health Plan Foundation. He served as Physician-in-Chief and Chief Medical Officer at Hebrew SeniorLife from 2004 to 2012. He helped develop the strategic direction of Hebrew SeniorLife Medical Group, in-home and community-based services, and long-term and post-acute care.  He is a faculty member of the Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife and is working to...

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I am looking for a new PCP for my 91 year old mother and this article/clip was helpful
We're so glad, Donna. Thanks for letting us know!

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