A primary care provider (PCP) is a doctor, physician assistant or nurse practitioner who is your main healthcare provider. This is the person you see first for routine care and health problems and who will refer you to a specialist when needed. Think of your PCP as part of your “medical home”—a team dedicated to helping you get the best possible healthcare.
Choosing a primary care provider is an important step in maintaining your health for a lifetime. Your PCP is often involved in your care for a long time, so it’s important to choose someone you can trust and work well with.
Get tips on how to choose a primary care provider.
Types of Primary Care Providers
Different primary care providers offer different services and areas of specialization. The type of provider you choose will depend on your medical condition, your stage of life and whether or not the provider will care for other members of your family. Primary care providers include:
- Family practice – Doctors who treat patients of all ages and can usually care for your whole family
- Pediatricians – Doctors who focus on caring for babies and children up to age 18
- Obstetricians/gynecologists (OB/GYNs) – Doctors who provide care for women, particularly those of childbearing age
- Internists/internal medicine – Doctors who treat adults
- Geriatrician/geriatrics – Doctors who specialize in caring for older adults
- Nurse practitioners and physician assistants – Healthcare professionals who practice under the supervision of a physician
Learn more about the specific training and practice requirements for each of these types of practitioners at our online Health Encyclopedia.
Find a Primary Care Provider
North Kansas City Hospital can help you find a primary care provider who’s right for you and your family.
Find a primary care provider online or call our Physician Referral & Health Information Line at 816-221-HEAL (4325) for personal assistance.