After reading the title of this article, you may be wondering what is a GP? If you’re one of those in the “what is GP” camp, you should know that “GP” stands for general practitioner.
A general practitioner or GP is simply a doctor who provides general medical care for common health issues. These professionals also perform checkups and other processes required for “health maintenance.” Many of them are also family doctors.
If you’re now wondering “what is a family doctor?” These are simply doctors who treat people of all ages. They can, for example, treat your infant, your teenager, and you – all in one visit. Many people like family doctors for the convenience they offer.
While many people wonder about the difference between family medicine vs general practice, there really isn’t anything other than the fact that general practitioners may only see adults in some cases. In a family vs general practice, however, everyone is welcome.
Ultimately, whether you choose a doctor for the whole family or just for yourself, you’ll want to choose someone who knows his or her stuff, such as experts like Dr. Elizabeth Barnes and Dr. Jack Chang. If you can’t have Elizabeth Barnes or Jack Chang, however, then you need to know how to go about choosing a qualified practitioner.
Choose a Doctor Who is Capable of Handling Chronic Conditions
If you do not have any serious health issues, you might not be too worried about what experience your doctor has with such health issues.
However, just because you don’t have a health condition now doesn’t mean that you won’t in the future. Hopefully, you never will, but, at some point, you and/or someone in your family could be diagnosed with a chronic condition.
If that happens, the last thing that you’ll want is to have to find a brand-new doctor. As such, when choosing a general practitioner, make sure he or she is familiar with common chronic conditions and how to treat and manage them. This includes conditions like diabetes, asthma, and heart or lung problems.
Obviously, if you already have a health condition, you can bring this up with potential doctors when choosing a doctor. This will allow you to learn more about what experience they have with your specific condition.
Really, however, whether you already have a medical condition or not, a good general practitioner should be able to help you manage any common condition life throws your way.
Look for Doctors Who Utilize Technology Effectively
In today’s world, life is incredibly busy. That’s why it’s very nice to find a doctor who uses an online patient portal to allow you to book appointments, keep track of health records, and more.
More and more doctors are utilizing this type of patient-friendly technology. If you think such technology would be useful to you and would help you to better manage your health, then look specifically for a doctor who offers these options.
Furthermore, when doctors use this kind of technology, it is usually a good indicator that they are also up to date on more advanced technologies, such as advanced forms of treatment.
You want a doctor who is “in the know” instead of stuck in the old ways of doing things. Thus, if you can find one who utilizes technology effectively in both small and big ways, you’ll know you’re getting the most advanced, up to date care.
Review Your Doctor’s Full History
There is a tendency to just trust doctors. After all, they are often looked at as authority figures in a way.
Unfortunately, not all doctors can be trusted. That’s why it’s a good idea to look closely into the background of any doctor you are thinking of using.
There are many good sites that can provide you with information about any complaints that may have been filed against a particular doctor or about any charges or lawsuits brought against that doctor.
By making use of such resources and doing a little “digging,” you can ensure that the doctor you choose is actually as trustworthy as he or she seems.
As you can see, you have lots of good tools at your disposal for choosing the right general doctor. Use them to the best of your ability, and there will be a much greater chance you’ll be satisfied with the care that you receive.