Your Primary Care Provider (PCP) is Vital to Great Health Care.
It’s key to have a good relationship – and good communication – with a doctor you trust and rely on. Your PCP keeps a watch on your overall health, recommending the right care at the right time to keep you at your healthy best. Here are some tips for getting the most from your PCP visits, finding one who is a perfect match for you and understanding what types of doctors can be your PCP.
Follow a Checklist:
- Always carry your insurance card, and present it at your visit.
- If you’re seeing a new PCP, have your medical records sent from your last doctor.
- Bring a list of all your medications – even vitamins and herbal remedies. Be sure to review them with your PCP. There may be better options that you can discuss.
- Bring a list of all your questions and concerns. Go over each one, and get a plan for how to address them.
- Be honest and thorough. Doctors need to know everything that’s going on to be able to help you. So don’t hold back. The information you share will always be kept private.
- Get a copy of the office hours and phone numbers. Know where to call in case of an emergency.
Five Steps to Finding the Right PCP
With WellCare, you can choose a new PCP any time. You might want one closer to home. You may want someone you feel understands you better. The choice is yours.
1. Think about your "must haves."
- When is the doctor in the office? On evenings and weekends?
- How many doctors are on call in case of an emergency?
- Is the facility handicapped-accessible?
- Is transportation convenient and available?
- Would you like an office nearby?
- Do you prefer male or female doctors?
- Do you want a doctor who speaks a language other than English?
2. Ask around.
Do your friends and relatives have a doctor they trust and recommend? Find out if the doctor is on your plan and accepting new patients.
3. Check the provider directory.
For a list of participating PCPs in your area, go to www.wellcare.com/FAP. Select “Find a Provider/Pharmacy.” Or, check your printed provider directory. It’s part of your New Member Welcome Kit.
4. Schedule your first visit.
Call to make an appointment. Or, let us help you make the appointment. You can call us at the number on the back of your Member ID card.
5. Get to know your new doctor.
Ask about his or her experience. Be sure you fell at ease with the doctor.
Who Can Be my PCP?
You’ll want to consider doctors from three general categories. All are well qualified to be your PCP:
1. General Practitioners/Physicians (GP)
These PCPs treat patients of all ages with a variety of health issues. This kind of doctor might be a Doctor of Medicine (M.D.) or a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.). A D.O. has training in the nerves, muscles and bones of the body. GPs will refer a patient to a specialist, if further treatment is needed.
2. Family Practitioners/Physicians
These PCPs are similar to GPs. They may also treat health issues that you would need to see a specialist for like women’s health issues or broken bones. For example, children may see a pediatrician. Women may see an OB/GYN.
These PCPs diagnose and treat adults with diseases and disorders of internal organs. They often specialize in chronic or long-term conditions.
Start building a better relationship with your PCP today. If you need help finding the right match, we can help. You can call us at the number on the back of your member ID card.