6 doctors weighed in:

How do patients know whether to see my family physician vs when to got to a specialist? It seems unclear.

6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Psychiatry
4 doctors agree

In brief: Step by Step

Primary care physicians are there to help you sort through issues so that you get the help you need, and so there's continuity even when you might also need specialty care.
If you use your family doctor as your medical home base, s/he can keep up with all the specialty exams and tests, along with you. S/he can care for you in most areas, and suggest specialists as needed. Simpler for all.

In brief: Step by Step

Primary care physicians are there to help you sort through issues so that you get the help you need, and so there's continuity even when you might also need specialty care.
If you use your family doctor as your medical home base, s/he can keep up with all the specialty exams and tests, along with you. S/he can care for you in most areas, and suggest specialists as needed. Simpler for all.
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Dr. Pamela Pappas
Thank
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
Radiation Oncology

In brief: Many specialist

Prefer a referral and refuse to see patients not referred, but others accept self referral.
I always want a primary care doctor to follow issues that I am not going to manage, and keep the pcp fully apprised of what and why I do things or recommend things.

In brief: Many specialist

Prefer a referral and refuse to see patients not referred, but others accept self referral.
I always want a primary care doctor to follow issues that I am not going to manage, and keep the pcp fully apprised of what and why I do things or recommend things.
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
Dr. Andrew Turrisi
Thank
Get help from a real doctor now
Dr. Andrea Brand
Board Certified, Family Medicine
7M people helped
Continue
108,000 doctors available
Read more answers from doctors