At Lahey Clinic, members of the primary care team work together to provide you with high quality care. Our health care team includes primary care physicians, resident physicians, medical students, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, licensed practical nurses, clinic assistants and medical secretaries.
Your primary care physician (PCP) is a doctor who gives you personalized advice and care and manages your overall health. Your PCP provides continuing care for your medical needs and preventive screenings to help you stay well. Your doctor also diagnoses problems and coordinates laboratory testing and imaging (radiology).If you have a complex health problem, your PCP will refer you to specialists within the Clinic. If you need to be hospitalized, your PCP will communicate with the hospitalists about your health history and follow your progress during your stay. Lahey Clinic's primary care physicians have earned medical degrees, completed a one-year internship and trained for two to three years in an accredited internal medicine residency program. Their knowledge is kept up to date by attending conferences and continuing medical education courses. The vast majority of them are board certified in either internal medicine or family medicine.
Medical residents are physicians who have graduated from medical school and are now training in a clinical specialty. As members of the primary care team, residents care for patients under the supervision of staff physicians. In addition, residents work with attending physicians and hospitalists in the hospital.Lahey's Internal Medicine Residency program attracts outstanding young physicians who help ensure patients receive the best care.
As one of the main teaching hospitals of Tufts University School of Medicine, Lahey offers supervised practical experience for medical students. During a three-month "clerkship," third-year medical students rotate through the Department of General Internal Medicine as well as internal medicine subspecialties, such as cardiology, endocrinology and palliative care. Medical students are teamed with staff physicians and more senior physicians in training. During an appointment, you may be introduced to a medical student who, with your permission, will take your medical history and conduct a brief physical exam. You would, of course, also be seen by the supervising physician working with that medical student.
Vital members of your health care team, these specially trained health professionals, who hold advanced degrees in medicine, diagnose and treat many of the same conditions as your primary care physician. They work collaboratively with your doctor to provide timely, quality care.You may see a PA or NP for same-day care for an urgent medical problem or for continuing care for an ongoing condition, such as diabetes or high blood pressure. Allied health professionals also conduct routine physical exams and counsel patients about preventive care. Like your PCP, they will order laboratory and radiological tests and write prescriptions as needed.
Key players on your health care team are RNs, who act as triage nurses. When you are sick and call your doctor's office, an RN will assess your needs and decide how to best to treat them. RNs can also answer medical questions and give home care advice for some health problems.
The certified diabetes educator provides diabetes self-management education. Patients with diabetes are taught how to manage their condition through nutrition, exercise, blood glucose monitoring and medications. This specially trained registered nurse educates patients, on an ongoing basis, about how to control their blood sugar. If you have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, your PCP or another care provider may refer you to the diabetes educator.
LPNs deliver hands-on patient care, including injections, dressing applications and electrocardiograms (EKGs). If you have high blood pressure, you may be scheduled for regular blood pressure checks with an LPN.
A clinic assistant escorts you from the waiting room to the exam room and records your height, weight, temperature and blood pressure.
When you call your doctor's office, the first person you talk to is the medical secretary. He or she schedules appointments, takes messages for your primary care provider and, if needed, will direct you to the triage nurse.