Whether you're 5 or 95, it's important to have a medical home. A medical home is a place where a team of medical professionals can provide you with personalized care, follow your health status over time and spot potential problems before they become life-threatening.
Greenville Health System has approximately 200 primary care physicians at 174 locations across the Upstate committed to serving you and your family. Plus, as part of GHS, these physicians have access to 400 specialists, should you need one.
Before you can establish a medical home, you need to decide what type of physician you want to see. Below are some of the most common types of primary care physicians.
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Family medicine is the medical specialty that provides continuing, comprehensive health care for the individual and family. The scope of family medicine encompasses all ages, both male and female, each organ system and every disease entity. Family medicine physicians typically attend a four-year medical school and complete a three-year residency before passing a board- certification exam.
Internal medicine physicians are specialists who apply scientific knowledge and clinical expertise to the diagnosis, treatment and care of adults across the spectrum of health to complex illness. At least three of their seven or more years of medical school and postgraduate training are dedicated to learning how to prevent, diagnose and treat diseases affecting adults, which then is followed by passing a board-certification exam.
Internal medicine-pediatrics physicians provide general primary health care to adults and children of all ages but have a special focus on treating adults with “carry-over” illnesses from childhood such as cystic fibrosis, diabetes, congenital heart disease and autism. These physicians typically attend a four-year medical school followed by a four-year residency (two years in internal medicine and two in pediatrics) before passing a board-certification exam. In the Upstate, GHS is the only system with doctors in this relatively new branch of primary care.
OB/GYNs specialize in the management of pregnancy, labor and birth. These doctors also receive specialized education in the female reproductive system and surgical care. Much of their education focuses on the detection and management of obstetric and gynecologic problems. OB/GYNs typically attend a four-year medical school and then undertake a four-year residency before passing a board-certification exam.
Pediatricians manage the physical, behavioral and mental health of children from birth until age 21. These physicians are trained to diagnose and treat a broad range of childhood illnesses from minor health problems to serious diseases. Pediatricians typically attend a four-year medical school and complete a three-year residency program in pediatrics before passing a board-certification exam.