Taking charge of your health: Top advice from Calgary family doctors

In our ever-changing health care landscape, taking an active role in your health is more important than ever.

The Primary Care Network team is committed to supporting you on this journey. We asked our family doctors for their top advice for patients who want to take a more collaborative approach to their health.  

Ask questions 

Understanding your condition fully can be daunting, but by requesting resources and written next steps, you can leave the clinic with a clear plan and a better grasp of your health. Dr. Christine Luelo advises: "Ask questions, especially the ones you are afraid to say out loud." 

Get involved 

Dr. Noreen O'Riordan encourages patients to be fearless in their conversations with their doctor. "Being actively involved in decision making in relation to our own health improves our experience and outcomes." By gaining a deeper understanding of your conditions and treatments you can help improve your overall health. 

Knowledge is power  

Dr. Shafeena Premji says: "We live in a beautiful world today, where now more than ever, information is at our fingertips ... knowledge is power." She advises patients become familiar with their baseline risk factors, such as blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol and breast density. "Focus on making those daily micro-wins in your daily habits and lifestyle choices." Small, consistent improvements can lead to significant health benefits over time.  

Team support 

Dr. Janet Reynolds urges people to take full advantage of the free help available from Primary Care Networks. Family doctors work closely with the PCN team of health professionals such as nurses, mental health counsellors and dietitians, to support you. “I love working with a team. It’s the support and the comfort in knowing I don’t shoulder the entire burden of care,” says Dr. Reynolds. 

Free support for your health  

Primary Care Networks offer a variety of free resources – like in-person or virtual workshops and appointments. Visit albertapcns.ca to learn more. 

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