Striving for wellness can often feel like solving a puzzle, and having your own doctor is the best way to put all the pieces together.

Primary care providers regularly discover underlying medical conditions or chronic diseases such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease during routine medical check-ups. That’s because over time, primary care providers get to build strong relationships with their patients and familiarize themselves with their medical history, making it easier to track patient wellness and identify unusual changes in health.

ADVENTIST - Dr. Daniel AnanyevWhile many consumers choose express care clinics and urgent care facilities for convenience, it’s valuable to have a primary care provider who can address overall patient health that may not be considered through the express care model. Serious medical issues and conditions can go unnoticed and unaddressed if express care is substituted for a primary care provider.

Primary care providers have the capacity to take a whole-person approach to health, addressing a patient’s social, emotional and mental health in addition to treating one symptom or physical ailment.

“Scheduling annual health check-ups and routinely visiting the same physician or provider lets the experts track patterns and keep patients healthy over the long run,” said Dr. Marc Moroye, chief medical officer for Healthcare Resources NW, a network of providers affiliated with Adventist Health that is available through health plans in Oregon. “Following the Adventist Health model for care, I always aim to be a partner in my patients’ health. If something about their care isn’t working for them or they don’t feel right, we work as a team to resolve the problem and get to the root of a health issue.”

Dr. Moroye also stresses that developing a strong relationship with a primary care provider offers consistency and continuity in care. “Having a primary care provider is beneficial for routine medical check-ups and is recommended for long-term disease management for diabetes, hypertension, asthma and other chronic conditions.”

Additionally, primary care emphasizes preventive measures to help guide people down a healthy path to avoid chronic disease. Eating well, exercising and making lifestyle changes that improve health can help people prevent or maintain cardiovascular diseases, arthritis, obesity and other chronic conditions that negatively impact daily life. Working with a provider to make simple changes over time can also improve sleep, boost energy levels and prevent emotional disorders like depression. Multiple interconnected factors play a role in disease prevention and overall health and happiness.

Evolving healthcare to meet your needs

There are a number of reasons why in such a fast-pace world, taking time to slow down is important — the best reason is your health. The first place to start is finding a primary care provider whom you trust and who will be a reliable partner in managing your health. Dr. Moroye recommends talking with friends, family and colleagues for provider references. Online materials and provider rankings are also useful resources in the search for a provider.

Recently, hospitals and health clinics throughout Portland have evolved to meet consumer needs and demands that express care offers. As the healthcare model shifts, more primary care providers and health clinics in the area are offering extended hours in the evenings and during the weekends. They’ve also rolled out e-health services and online patient portals to simplify appointment scheduling and to provide patients with easy access to medical records.

Technology, consumer demands and the new reality of healthcare have shifted how consumers search for and access medical care. One factor remains the same — primary care is the best healthcare option for consumers interested in overall health and patient wellness.

Perhaps most importantly to some consumers, it can be cheaper to have routine visits with a primary care provider. That’s because they address overall health to diagnose and treat pre-existing conditions to help prevent costly chronic diseases later on in life.

Top Benefits of Primary Care

  • Lower overall healthcare costs
  • Preventive care
  • Chronic disease management
  • Patient wellness
  • Patient/provider relationship building
  • Knowledge about health history
  • Improved access to providers
  • Patient portal/e-health services
  • Finding a primary care provider

  • Friends, family and coworkers
  • Insurance provider