What is Primary Care?

Primary Care is your first contact with the health care system. The focus of primary care is to provide the right service, at the right time, at the right location. Many types of care you receive can be described as primary care. For example, primary care refers to those times when you receive a diagnosis, treatment or help with a health problem, or even when a health care provider talks with you about staying healthy and preventing illness.

Many people think of primary care as typically provided by family doctors, but it can include nurses, midwives, dietitians, pharmacists, mental health professionals, therapists and others.

Primary care services lead to:

  • less need for hospital and emergency department visits
  • safer care
  • more satisfied patients
  • lower health care costs

This is especially true when health care is delivered by teams of providers that may include doctors, nurses, dietitians or any number of health professionals. The care offered crosses programs and services, supports long-term doctor/patient relationships and provides faster, more focused access to primary care.

Good primary care leads to a high-quality, sustainable health care system.

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