If you’re like most people, taking better care of your health is a top priority when starting a new year. What some don’t realize, however, is that an important aspect of improving and maintaining their health is focusing on preventive care.
Preventive care is more than just visiting your doctor for an annual physical exam. It also involves periodic screenings, diagnostic testing, immunizations, approved medications, and counselling. Depending on your age, overall health, and risk factors,this may include preventive screenings for:
- Electrocardiogram (EKG to check heart health)
- Echocardiogram (another heart-health test)
- Mammogram (to check for breast cancer)
- PSA test (to check prostate-specific antigen levels in your blood)
- Pap smear (to check for cervical cancer)
- Manual prostate exam (a DRE, or digital rectal exam)
- Pulmonary function (lung) exam
- Manual breast exam
- Pelvic exam to check for lumps
The start of a year is the perfect time to plan and schedule routine medical services for preventive care with your primary care physician.If you have already scheduled some appointments for this year but can’t remember the exact dates, this is a good time to call your doctor and confirm your appointments, so you can add them on your 2023 calendar.
The Value of Preventive Care
By prioritizing and maintaining a good preventive care health routine, you’re not only helping to protect yourself from potential ailments and health risks but also avoiding additional medical expenses.
Preventive care services are covered with no out-of-pocket costs to you under most health insurance plans. Typically, these services include annual checkups with your doctor, routine screenings, and immunizations, as well as certain medications and counseling services.
However, these services are generally not considered preventive if you obtain them as part of a visit to diagnose, monitor, or treat an existing illness or injury – in which case,co-payments, coinsurance, and deductibles may apply. In other words, if you wait until you’re sick to see your doctor, your visit will qualify as routine, and you will likely be responsible for charges until you meet your deductible and out-of-pocket limits.
Also, if you wait until you develop symptoms, it could make it more difficult to treat a life-threatening condition such as cancer or heart disease. If these symptoms are caught early through a routine preventive care screening, you will have more treatment options with a better chance of a positive outcome compared to waiting until physical symptoms develop.
By scheduling and keeping track of your preventive care appointments and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, you can help avoid major medical issues throughout the course of your life – and save a substantial amount of medical expenses along the way.
Preventive Care Near You in Central and South Florida
At Palm Medical Centers, we believe primary care is inherently preventive healthcare. The goal of our board-certified primary care physicians is to detect any indicators of illness or infection as early as possible and treat it before it can affect your health. Our doctors are generalists, not specialists, meaning they treat the whole you. They have the knowledge and expertise in the full spectrum of medicine to help you manage your health in the long-term.
If you are looking for high-quality, value-based primary care to help you stay as healthy as possible in the new year and every year, Palm Medical Centers are here for you. We have 26 clinics conveniently located throughout Central and South Florida to serve you.
For more information about the benefits of preventive primary care, or to schedule an appointment, call us today at (833) 500-7256 (PALM), or simply complete our online form to request an appointment. We look forward to being your primary care provider and helping you stay healthy.