What is primary care?

HEALTH (Adapted from the World Health Organization)

The Co-operative Health Centre believes that “Health is a state of complete physical, mental, spiritual and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.

Primary Health Care

Primary health care is broad and unrestricted. It is often a person’s first point of contact with the health system. This may come in the form of a visit with a family physician or nurse practitioner, advice from a pharmacist, information on managing a chronic disease, or numerous other interactions between patients, families and providers.

At its best, primary health care provides a home-base for health services, improved access to services, appropriate care and assistance to navigate services and supports for maintaining
good health.

A Team delivered primary health care system makes good use of a full range of health professionals and is also the link to other parts of the health system helping patients to navigate the complexities and services of the health system.

It includes coordinating, integrating and expanding systems and services to provide chronic disease management, health promotion and encourages the best use of all health providers to maximize the potential of all health resources.

The Primary health care approach uses education and awareness to promote health and well-being. In doing so, people become less dependent on health care services to maintain good health and more involved in the habits that promote healthy living.

The primary health care approach emphasizes the importance of people being able to access the tools and services needed to maintain a healthy living standard. Education programs that explain nutrition requirements and promote mental and spiritual health provide the preventative framework needed to support basic health needs.

Through access to services, health professionals and education and awareness initiatives people are provided the tools needed to maintain their primary health needs.  The end result works to empower individuals to take an active role in their health status by implementing healthy habits within their everyday lives.

For more information on the Provincial Framework for Primary Health Care visit; https://www.saskatchewan.ca/residents/health/accessing-health-care-services/primary-health-care