Family Medicine and Internal Medicine physicians serve as primary care physicians. Both have attended four years of medical school, followed by a three year residency. The focus of the residency is what differentiates the two areas. Family practice physicians’ training focuses on caring for the whole family, including pediatrics and OB/GYN care. Internal medicine training focuses on disease facing adults. Both types of physicians are required to take ongoing medical education courses throughout their career.
Both Practice and Internal Medicine physicians can treat a variety of illnesses and conditions, conduct health screenings and comprehensive physical exams, and provide primary, wellness and preventative healthcare. They can be your partner in monitoring and managing long-term illnesses and conditions including diabetes and high cholesterol. If they diagnose a condition requiring specialist follow up, they can coordinate that care with the specialty physician.
When it comes to selecting a primary care physician, there are several things to consider that may help you make your decision:
- How complex is your health and family medical history?
- How important is the geographic location of the provider and the access they have for appointments?
- Is the doctor board certified or board eligible?