How often should you visit your primary care physician?
GEHA | February 28, 2023
It is important to establish care for you and your family with a primary care doctor. These doctors specialize in family medicine or internal medicine. They will manage your overall care and refer you to specialists when needed. If you already have a chronic condition, they will help manage it and improve your quality of life.
Getting your regular checkups with a primary care physician builds a relationship with that doctor. He or she gets to know you and can personalize your care and track your health over time.
See your primary care doctor for your non-emergency needs such as a cold and the flu and other common illnesses, checkups, screenings and immunizations. He or she will also test for all major health-related conditions including obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes and manage your prescriptions. They will also do annual labs and bloodwork to monitor your health and establish baselines for what is normal and what you may need to work on to make yourself healthier, such as lowering your cholesterol.
Regular health exams and screenings can help find problems or catch them early when your chances for treatment and cure are better.
By getting the right health services, screenings and treatments, you are taking steps that help your chances for living a longer, healthier life. Your age, health and family history, lifestyle choices (what you eat, how active you are, whether you smoke) and other important factors affect what and how often you need health care.
To find an in-network primary care physician near you, use the GEHA Find Care Tool. If you are a GEHA member, you may be eligible to receive a reward for completing an annual physical (Elevate and Elevate Plus members only) or screening test such as a mammogram or colorectal screening.
“The Importance of a primary care provider.” www.mayoclinichealthsystem.org, Mayo Clinic Health System, 7 April 2015.
“How to Choose a Doctor.” www.webmd.com, Web MD LLC, 17 September 2019.