A family doctor is a medical doctor who specializes in the branch of medicine that focuses on health care for both genders and all ages. Family practice is a medical specialty that diagnoses and treats more than 90 percent of all patient problems.
Family doctors specialize in treating the physical, mental and emotional well-being of their patients. As a result, they work closely with their patients and other subspecialists to coordinate care for more complicated and special problems. Family doctors immunize children against infectious diseases such as influenza, measles, meningitis and mumps.
Family doctors spend much of their time conducting regular health care examinations, preventative medicine and general health practices. Preventative services generally include physical exams, immunizations, diabetes education and PAP tests. Family doctors consult and advise for chronic medical problems, such as hypertension, weight loss management, asthma, depression and diabetes. Most family doctors offer services for walk-in urgent care for injuries and sudden illnesses.
Family doctors are well-educated and trained in all major medical areas. Their education is ongoing in learning new treatments and medications for various diseases and ailments. Board certification is granted through the American Board of Family Medicine.