When was the last time that you had visited the physician next door? Are you apprehensive about consulting a person who, despite his qualifications and experience, does not hold numerous degrees or has not followed the super-specialization path?
Believe it or not, you have been making one of the biggest mistakes!
The doctor many have forgotten
For years, prior to the era of specializations, General Physicians have been a patient’s best friend. They were the go-to doctor no matter how serious the ailment might be. The practice, however, has faded over time due to many issues surrounding hefty medical bills, incorrect diagnosis, etc.
In an ideal scenario, patients visit the General Physicians before approaching the specialists. Interestingly, more than 80 percent of the ailments can be treated effectively if one approaches a general physician at the apt moment.
Many would consider these doctors to be the gatekeepers of the medical world. After all, they are aware of all branches of the field.
How significant is a General Physician in the medical fraternity?
It is general physicians or general practitioners who still manage the emergency departments of the majority of the primary and secondary care institutions in India. Also, there is a shortage of emergency medicine specialists in the country.
According to Dr. Abdul Rafiq, from Kollam,“General Physicians form the backbone of the medical care systems in a country. They help reduce the burden on other specialists and handle routine prescriptions. They also help other specialists by conducting a thorough primary examination of the patient.”
Why must a patient consult a general physician?
Senior doctors in the country have commented that, lately, there appears to be a dearth of good General Physicians. Remember, a general physician is also authorized to prescribe medication and is trained to diagnose as well as treat ailments.
Here are a few reasons:
1. General physicians have a unique approach to various health concerns. To begin with, they address various health concerns from a holistic perspective. He or she does not focus on one aspect of the human physiology.
For instance, if a person complains of chest pain, the physician would examine the person based on various parameters and then recommend a suitable type of treatment.
2. Most common ailments like a cough, cold, fever, headaches, etc. can be treated effectively and in a less stressful manner if one visits a general physician.
3. The general physician handles the routine prescriptions that must be administered to the patient, thereby, reducing the time and effort that would have to be spared by senior specialists.
4. The general physician can also, many a time, let the patient know as to where or what the root-cause of the ailment is and can direct them to the best experts. Remember, you don’t always need to have an MRI taken each time you fall sick!.
So, the next time you are unwell, do not rush to the first super-specialty hospital in your hometown. You might be surprised to know that the doctor-next-door can solve your problems more effectively!