Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine

2013 Edition
| Editors: Marc D. Gellman, J. Rick Turner

Primary Care

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1005-9_137

Definition

Primary care is a component of integrated health care in which comprehensive and accessible care is provided to a defined population. It is not disease- or organ-specific, but rather examines a person’s overall state of health and well-being. Primary care is often the first point of contact into a health system for persons with a health concern including those with acute and chronic physical, mental, and social health issues. Primary care is a longitudinal and continuous approach to health maintenance including health promotion, disease prevention, health education, and counseling and includes diagnosis, treatment, and management of acute and chronic conditions. Primary care focuses on the provision of primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention measures, such as screenings, immunizations, and prevention of disease progression or sequelae. In primary care, the patient is seen as a partner in their health and health decisions. The primary care provider partners with the...

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References and Readings

  1. American Academy of Family Physicians. (2011). Primary care. Retrieved from http://www.aafp.org/online/en/home/policy/policies/p/primarycare.html#Parsys0002. Accessed October 20, 2011.
  2. Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), Pub. L. No. 111–148, 124 Stat. 119 (2010). Retrieved from http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/PLAW-111publ148/pdf/PLAW-111publ148.pdf. Accessed October 20, 2011.

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Maryland School of Nursing and the University of Maryland Medical Center Emergency DepartmentBaltimoreUSA