Types of Health Care Providers
- Primary Care Providers
- Nursing Care Providers
- Specialty Care Providers
- Pharmacotherapy Professionals
A primary care provider is a professional who specializes in minor health problems and checkups. Nursing Care Provider is a person who assists a doctor and takes care of the patients in hospitals or nursing homes (WHO, 2016). Specialty Care Providers are the professionals in various medical fields who might consult the primary care providers.
- Doctors of Osteopathic Medicine
- Obstetrics and Gynecology
- Nurse Practitioners
- Physician Assistants
The medical doctors, as well as doctors of osteopathic medicine, are sometimes being referred to as generalists. They specialize in the internal medicine and family practice. Internists are board-certified doctors after completion of residency (MedlinePlus, 2014a). They provide medical care for adults of different ages for the broad range of health problems. Doctors specializing in obstetrics and gynaecology also fall into the category of the primary care providers. Nurse practitioners are the nurses that have graduate training. Physician Assistants along with Doctors of Medicine provide a broad spectrum of medical services (MedlinePlus, 2014a). Geriatricians are doctors specializing in family medicine (MedlinePlus, 2014a).
- Registered Nurses
- Advanced Practice Nurses
- Clinical Nurse Specialists
- Licensed Practical Nurses
- Certified Nurse Midwives
- Certified Registered Nurse Anaesthetists
Registered nurses are nurses who finished a nursing program and have been licensed by the state (WHO, 2016). Advanced practice nurses received the training and education that goes beyond the basic programs. Clinical nurse specialists are those who have training and education in cardiac, psychiatric and community health fields (WHO, 2016). Those caregivers who have been state-licensed and allowed to care for the sick are called licensed practical nurses. Certified nurse midwives specialize in women health care along with the prenatal care and care for those who have given birth (WHO, 2016). Certified registered nurse anaesthetists have been licensed in the field of anaesthesia (WHO, 2016).
- General surgery doctors
A gastroenterologist is a health care professional specializing in the disorders of the digestive system. Dermatologists are the doctors who specialize in the broad range of skin disorders. Endocrinologists are those who have been certified to treat hormonal and metabolic disorders. General surgery doctors perform common surgeries. Immunologists are doctors who specialize in the treatment of the different disorders of the immune system. Cardiologists are those specialists who treat heart disorders.
Pharmacotherapy specialists or pharmacists are experts in the field of pharmacotherapy. They ensure the safe use of drugs and are responsible for the direct patient care. They also provide doctors with the primary drug-related information.
Practitioners in Different Fields of Practice
- Mental Health Practitioners
- Geriatric Care Practitioners
- Maternal and Newborn Health Practitioners
- Rehabilitation Care Practitioners
- Surgical Practitioners
- Medical Diagnosis Providers
Mental health practitioners are the professional who specialize in providing patients with services aimed at improving the mental health (WHO, 2016). Geriatric care practitioners are health workers who organize and coordinate the care of the disabled or elderly for the prolongation of their life and the improvement of its quality (WHO, 2016). Maternal and newborn health practitioners are health workers who specialize in the care of women and children before and after childbirth. Rehabilitation care practitioners provide health care aimed at the restoration of functional abilities of patients with impairments or disabilities (WHO, 2003). Medical diagnosis providers specialize in the provision of the correct diagnosis that would explain patient’s symptoms.
Other Types of Health Care Providers
- Community health care workers
- Managers of health care services
- Health information technicians
- Assistive personnel
Community health care workers are elected members of a community who are responsible for providing basic health care (MedlinePlus, 2014b). Managers of health care services are those individuals who are in charge of hospitals and healthcare systems (WHO, n.d.). Health information technicians are concerned with information management. Assistive personnel works with individuals with disabilities and impairments (MedlinePlus, 2014b).
Nurse Practitioners’ Responsibilities
- Performing physical examinations
- Writing prescriptions
- Coordinating referrals
- Providing prenatal care
Performing physical examinations also includes evaluation and obtaining patients histories. Diagnosing might include the performing of lab tests, x-rays , EKGs and other diagnostic studies. The nurse practitioner’s prescriptive authorities vary according to state regulations (WHO, 2006). Coordinating referrals might be related to requesting rehabilitation treatments. Prenatal care includes providing care services to women and their kids before and after childbirth. Counselling relates to educating patients on the adequate health behaviors and proper self-care skills (WHO, 2006).
Branches of Health Disciplines
- Infectious Disease and Virology
Cardiology is a medical field dealing with circulatory system disorders (WHO, 2006). Gynecology is a medical branch that deals with the health of the woman’s reproductive system and breasts (WHO, 2016). Hepatology is a medical field that studies and manages the disorders of liver, gallbladder and pancreas (WHO, 2016). Is a medical branch that specializes in the infectious diseases, their control and treatment. Dermatology is a medical specialty dealing with the skin, scalp, nails and hair (WHO, 2016). Hematology is a medical field that studies the diseases related to blood.
MedlinePlus. (2014a). Choosing a Primary Care Provider. Web.
MedlinePlus. (2014b). Types of Healthcare Providers. Web.
WHO. (2003). Community-based Rehabilitation Guidelines. Web.
WHO.(n.d.). Mangement. Web.
WHO. (2006). Working Together for Health.The World Health Report 2006. Web.