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How to get the preventive care you need!

There's a reason your grandmother said "prevention is better than cure!" Our health is our most important asset and we all want to take care of our health! It is much easier (and cheaper!) to take care of ourselves and prevent disease, or to treat disease when we catch it early than it is to treat a more complicated health problem.

Many people only think of going to the doctor when they are sick, but having an annual wellness visit is a great way to make sure your health is on track and that you are up to date on any preventive health needs you might have. This visit will include a review of your personal health history and family history so that your doctor can advise you on any screening tests that might be helpful for you. This could include screening for chronic diseases such as high blood pressure or diabetes, as well as screening for cancer. They will also make sure you are up to date on any vaccines that may be recommended for you based on your age and health status.

If you already have a chronic disease- there is still plenty of prevention you can do! You may need more than one visit a year to stay on top of this- many people with chronic diseases need to see their doctor 2-4 times per year to monitor their disease and make sure it is under control to prevent complications.

Preventive care works best when you build a relationship over time with a physician who knows you and your health and can make personalized recommendations. For many patients without health insurance, or even those with insurance, this can be a challenge. Many traditional clinics have a high turnover of doctors, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants, so it is difficult to see the same doctor more than once. These clinics often have a high patient volume so visits may be short and can feel rushed, and may not feel worth the out-of-pocket cost for a person without insurance. While most insurances offer an annual wellness visit for "free," patients often find out after the fact that if testing is ordered or health concerns are discussed, they later receive an unexpected bill.

A direct primary care membership is an excellent option for patients looking to take control of their health with preventive care. Whether or not they have insurance, a membership gives patients direct access to their personal physician for as many visits as they need- both for preventive care and if they happen to get sick or injured. Visits are longer than at traditional clinics, so they can receive a more thorough review of their health history and their physician's recommendations without feeling rushed. They do not need to be afraid to ask a question due to worry about a surprise bill. They can ask questions that come up between visits and get an answer promptly directly from their personal physician.

At Vida Family Medicine we are currently accepting new patients into our direct primary care membership. Visit our website to learn more and schedule your first visit. We look forward to helping you take control of your health with preventive care!

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