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Staying with a doctor can extend your life

Sticking to a family doctor can help you stay healthy and extend your life A new British study says. The researchers examined 22 studies from nine countries with different cultures and health systems. Of these, 18 came to the conclusion that a longer stay at the same doctor significantly reduced early deaths compared to alternate physicians.

"Currently, the decision to lead a patient to the doctor of their choice is considered socially comfort," said senior researcher Dr. Denis Pereira Gray. "Now it's clear that it's about improving the quality of medical practice with a profound impact on all healthcare systems."

Gray is professor emeritus at the University of Exeter in England. He is also former President of the Royal College of General Practitioners and former Chairman of the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges.

He said this study is the first systematic review of the relationship between continuity of physician care and death rates.

Not only can the same family doctor extend life, the same goes for specialists like surgeons and psychiatrists, Gray said.

"Patients talk more freely to doctors they know, and doctors can better understand them and better adapt advice and treatment," he said.

Although technology has brought advances in medical care, Gray said, "this research shows that human factors such as continuity of care remain important and, in fact, are life and death."

Has an ongoing relationship with a physician many benefits that can improve care, said dr. Marc Siegel, Professor of Medicine at NYU Langone Medical Center in New York City.

"The Intangible The aspect of knowing your patients, knowing their history, knowing their idiosyncrasies, and knowing who they are can help to predict outcomes and help you intervene," said Siegel, who did not Part of the study was.

At a time of increasing consolidation of medical information, communication between physicians is still broken, he added. For example, patients being looked after in clinics or hospitals may not see the same doctor on each visit.

In addition, doctors today spend less time with each patient. "Fewer face is unfavorable," Siegel said.

The personal relationship between a patient and a caregiver should also include nurses, nurse practitioners and medical assistants, he added

"The whole idea is a personalization of the healthcare industry and a continuity of care," Siegel said.

It is therefore important to find a so-called "medical home". A medical home is a team-based treatment approach that is coordinated by a family doctor. Aside from the care, it's a one-stop location for all your medical records and a place where caregiver know you and your needs, Siegel said.

If we know you well, a family doctor will help you, if necessary, to refer you to the ideal specialist.

"If you have a good family doctor, follow the suggestions as to who else you should go," Siegel said. "Family doctors are leaders, good doctors know good doctors."

The report was published online in the journal on June 28 BMJ Open .

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