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In the U.S., as its population ages, the medical specialty of Primary Care is becoming more and more in critical demand.
And yet, it is becoming more and more an issue of personal responsibility.
Why? Because Americans, at least, increasingly can no longer depend upon physicians for their primary care needs.
This obviously varies from nation to nation. In other parts of the globe, China for instance, primary care may have much more effective impact on its citizens, as local medicine is emphasized.
However, in the US, a new study, from Johns Hopkins, points out a dangerous decline--- internal medicine residents no longer receive the training required to become effective primary care doctors.
This means that a growing wave of patients with ongoing health problems as diabetes, hypertension and high cholesterol, could swamp the system.
Doctors are focusing on treating someone who is hospitalized, instead of keeping their patients out of the hospital to begin with.
"When I graduated from residency here, I knew much more about how to ventilate a patient on a machine than how to control somebody's blood sugar -- and that's a problem," said one general internist and associate professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. "The average resident doesn't know what the goal for normal fasting blood sugar should be. If you don't know what it has to be, how are you going to guide your diabetes management with patients?"
U.S. Medical school curriculums teach much more inpatient care, than outpatient care. But the John Hopkins study shows that outpatient visits account for fully 90 percent of all visits with doctors.
Another very revealing fact--- bigger isn't better. American physicians, who completed internal medicine residency programs at community hospitals, were better prepared for outpatient needs than physicians trained at academic medical centers!
Personalized treatment is the answer, obviously.
And who cares more about your health than YOU do?
American medical schools need to change the way they teach residents. And, if the mission of internal medicine residency programs is to meet society's health-care needs, then these results reveal that medical training programs are failing.
Preventive medicine--- meaning eating healthy food in healthy amounts, and getting at least an hour of exercise daily--- is fast becoming the best, and in many cases, the only form of primary care a person can achieve.
The old saying, "An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure", has never been more relevant.
Use MDINFO to find answers, and use that knowledge to back up your own common sense.
Always be pro-active in your diet and exercise routines, for with knowledge, they are the front line of your own primary care--- prevention!