You probably don’t think twice about visiting the doctor when you’re sick. But do you make a point of getting a routine check-up every year? In other words, are you up to date on your preventive care?
Having an annual preventive visit gives your doctor a chance to evaluate your health and make sure you get the right screenings for your age, gender, and family history. Preventive care services are an important part of staying healthy. As we like to say, an ounce of prevention can lead to a lifetime of good health.
What is preventive care?
Preventive care can help you stay well and catch problems early, which in turn can help you live a longer, healthier life. This routine health care includes everything from annual check-ups and screenings to immunizations and counseling.
Preventive care reduces the risk of diseases, disabilities, and death – and yet millions of people don’t get their recommended preventive health services. In fact, it’s reported that only 8% of Americans get routine preventive care. We encourage every Spira Care patient to take full advantage of the preventive care services available at Spira Care Centers.
Why is it important to have a preventive visit?
The whole goal of preventive care is to prevent illness before symptoms arise. We want to keep healthy people healthy. We also want to detect problems beforehand. When we do, it results in better health outcomes.
“A lot of the preventive care is provided at the patient’s wellness visit,” explains Dr. Kyle Miller, a family medicine physician at Spira Care. “At these annual check-ups, we review current medical issues and any past medical history, and then keep patients up-to-date on the preventive health services that are recommended for their age or medical condition.”
Dr. Miller elaborates, “We do prostrate and colon cancer screenings for men. Cervical cancer screenings, breast cancer screenings, and colon cancer screenings for women.”
“We also review any vital sign abnormalities. Blood pressure is classically an issue for a lot of patients. It’s usually silent, and so it’s often picked up at a preventive health visit,” Dr. Miller shares.
What’s covered in a preventive care visit
Spira Care provides preventive care to patients at no additional cost.* At every Spira Care Center, you have access to an entire Care Team, plus a variety of preventive care services, including:
- Routine preventive care: We encourage patients to stay up to date on exams and screenings focused on disease prevention and health maintenance.
- Immunizations: Spira Care Teams administer a wide range of CDC-recommended immunizations for newborns, infants, children, adolescents, adults and seniors.
Get to know your preventive care quarterback
No one can champion your health like a primary care physician, or PCP. This physician is your go-to for managing your healthcare. PCPs are trained to monitor your overall health and should coordinate any care that you receive.
Dr. Miller emphasizes the importance of having a PCP. “A primary care physician will look at your health in general from a broader picture and help outline any recommended steps from a prevention standpoint to try to keep you as healthy as we can.”
A PCP will get to know your medical history inside and out. What’s more, your PCP will work with you to develop a personalized prevention plan.
The vital role of a primary care physician:
- Be your first call for health concerns
- Provide preventive care services
- Order lab work and screenings
- Conduct health risk assessments
- Diagnose and treat illness
- Manage chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes, and heart disease
- Advise you on how to maintain a healthy lifestyle
- Refer you to specialty care
Preventive care starts here
Having access to regular primary care is linked to lower over health care costs and longer, healthier lives. Do you have a trusted relationship with a PCP? If not, we encourage you to get started. It will be good for your health, life, and wallet. Call 913-29-SPIRA (77427) to schedule an appointment for a preventive visit or any other care need.
* Blue KC members enrolled in plans (without a Health Savings Account) with exclusive access to Spira Care Centers will have no costs for any procedure provided at a Spira Care Center. Blue KC members enrolled in plans (with a Health Savings Account or HSA Eligible) with exclusive access to Spira Care Centers will have an affordable charge for services. Preventive services are covered at 100 percent.
* Health and Welfare Funds who contract with Blue KC to offer exclusive access to Spira Care Centers provide their non-Medicare eligible participants access to appointments and services at Spira Care Centers at no out-of-pocket cost.