A licensed medical professional who diagnoses and treats illnesses, injuries, and health conditions.


A physician is a highly trained and licensed medical professional who is responsible for diagnosing, treating, and preventing illnesses, injuries, and other health conditions in patients. They use their extensive knowledge of medicine, the human body, and various diagnostic tools to assess patients' health, develop treatment plans, and provide ongoing care. Physicians may specialize in specific areas of medicine, such as pediatrics, surgery, or internal medicine, and work in a variety of settings, including hospitals, clinics, and private practices.

Did you know?

Well Me Right offers thousands of virtual and online health and wellness sessions from wellness experts, health coaches, and other holistic health and fitness professionals.

Browse and book a FREE discovery session with the world’s leading wellness experts & get advice over a video call.


The origins of the physician profession can be traced back to ancient civilizations, such as Egypt, Greece, and China, where individuals practiced various forms of medicine and healing. In ancient Greece, Hippocrates, often referred to as the 'Father of Medicine,' established the Hippocratic Oath, which set ethical standards for physicians that are still relevant today. Throughout history, the physician's role has evolved alongside advancements in medical knowledge and technology. The development of medical schools, standardized training, and licensing requirements has helped to establish the modern physician profession as we know it today.


  1. Improved Health Outcomes Physicians play a crucial role in diagnosing and treating illnesses, injuries, and health conditions, leading to improved health outcomes for patients.
  2. Disease Prevention By providing preventive care, such as routine check-ups and screenings, physicians help patients maintain good health and prevent the onset of serious illnesses.
  3. Patient Education Physicians educate patients about their health conditions, treatment options, and lifestyle changes that can improve their overall well-being.
  4. Continuous Learning Physicians engage in ongoing education and professional development to stay current with the latest medical advancements and best practices.
  5. Collaborative Care Physicians often work as part of a healthcare team, collaborating with other medical professionals to provide comprehensive, patient-centered care.
  6. Community Health Advocacy Many physicians advocate for public health initiatives and policies that promote the health and well-being of the communities they serve.

How It Works

Physicians are highly trained medical professionals who diagnose and treat illnesses, injuries, and other health conditions. They conduct physical exams, order and interpret diagnostic tests, and prescribe medications or other treatments. Physicians also provide preventive care, such as routine check-ups and health screenings, and offer advice on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. They may specialize in various areas, such as pediatrics, internal medicine, or surgery, and work in diverse settings, including hospitals, clinics, and private practices. Physicians collaborate with other healthcare professionals to ensure comprehensive patient care and maintain accurate medical records to track patient progress and treatment plans.


When seeking medical care from a physician, it is essential to consider their area of expertise and whether they are the most appropriate healthcare provider for your specific needs. It is also important to verify that the physician is licensed and board-certified in their specialty. Patients should feel comfortable communicating openly with their physician and asking questions about their health concerns, treatment options, and potential side effects. Building a trusting relationship with a physician is crucial for receiving the best possible care. Additionally, patients should be aware of the costs associated with medical care and understand their insurance coverage or payment options.

How Much It Costs

The cost of seeing a physician can vary widely depending on factors such as insurance coverage, location, and the type of care required. For those with health insurance, the cost may range from a small co-pay of $20-$50 per visit to a larger percentage of the total bill, such as 10%-20%. For those without insurance, a primary care visit can cost anywhere from $150-$300, while specialist visits may range from $200-$500 or more. Additional costs may include diagnostic tests, medications, and procedures, which can significantly increase the overall expense of medical care.

Virtual & Online Options

Virtual or online consultations with physicians, also known as telemedicine, have become increasingly popular, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. These options offer several benefits compared to traditional in-person visits, such as convenience, accessibility, and reduced exposure to infectious diseases. Patients can often schedule appointments more quickly and avoid the need to travel to a physical office. However, in-person visits may be necessary for certain examinations, diagnostic tests, or treatments that cannot be performed remotely. Additionally, some patients may prefer the personal interaction and rapport that comes with face-to-face consultations with their physician.


Physicians must complete a rigorous educational and training process to become licensed and certified. In the United States, this typically includes earning a bachelor's degree, followed by a four-year Doctor of Medicine (MD) or Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (DO) degree from an accredited medical school. After medical school, physicians complete a residency program in their chosen specialty, which can last from 3-7 years depending on the field. Many physicians also pursue additional fellowship training to further specialize. To practice medicine, physicians must pass the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) or the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination (COMLEX-USA) and obtain a state medical license. Board certification in a specific specialty is optional but often sought by physicians to demonstrate their expertise.

Complementary Practices

Complementary practices that synergize well with physicians include holistic medicine, integrative medicine, chiropractic care, acupuncture, massage therapy, physical therapy, mental health counseling, nutritional counseling, and health coaching. These practices can provide additional support and alternative approaches to healthcare, working in conjunction with traditional medical care provided by physicians.

Practitioner Types

Practitioner types involved with physicians include primary care physicians (family medicine, internal medicine, pediatrics), specialists (cardiologists, oncologists, neurologists, etc.), surgeons, radiologists, anesthesiologists, psychiatrists, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, registered nurses, medical assistants, and administrative staff such as medical receptionists and billing specialists.

Are you an expert?

Turn your knowledge into impact & income and share your expertise, grow, and improve lives. Become a Wellness Expert on Well Me Right.

Offer paid wellness sessions for 1:1 virtual coaching and support and connect with wellness-seeking individuals on Well Me Right.


  • Q: What is the difference between a primary care physician and a specialist?

    • A: A primary care physician is a healthcare provider who offers general medical care for common illnesses and health concerns, as well as preventive care. They often serve as the first point of contact for patients. In contrast, a specialist is a physician who has advanced training and expertise in a specific area of medicine, such as cardiology or neurology, and focuses on diagnosing and treating more complex or specific health conditions.
  • Q: How often should I visit my primary care physician for a check-up?

    • A: The frequency of check-ups with your primary care physician depends on factors such as your age, gender, and overall health status. Generally, adults should have a check-up every 1-3 years, while older adults or those with chronic health conditions may need more frequent visits. It's best to consult with your physician to determine the optimal schedule for your individual needs.
  • Q: What should I do if I have a medical emergency and my primary care physician is unavailable?

    • A: In the event of a medical emergency, it is crucial to seek immediate medical attention. If your primary care physician is unavailable, you should go to the nearest emergency room or call your local emergency services (such as 911 in the United States). Emergency medical professionals are equipped to handle urgent and life-threatening situations and can provide the necessary care until you can follow up with your primary care physician.
  • Q: Can I communicate with my physician through telemedicine or virtual appointments?

    • A: Many physicians now offer telemedicine or virtual appointments, allowing patients to consult with their healthcare provider remotely using video conferencing or phone calls. This can be especially convenient for minor health concerns, follow-up visits, or when in-person visits are not feasible. Check with your physician's office to see if they provide telemedicine services and how to schedule a virtual appointment.
  • Q: How can I find a reputable physician who meets my healthcare needs?

    • A: To find a reputable physician, start by asking for recommendations from family, friends, or other healthcare professionals you trust. You can also use online directories or your insurance provider's website to search for physicians in your area. When selecting a physician, consider factors such as their qualifications, areas of expertise, patient reviews, and whether they accept your insurance. It's also essential to choose a physician with whom you feel comfortable communicating and who listens to your concerns.


Physicians play a vital role in promoting and maintaining the health and well-being of individuals and communities. By working in collaboration with a range of healthcare practitioners and staying up-to-date with the latest medical knowledge and technologies, physicians can provide comprehensive, patient-centered care. As a patient, it is essential to establish a strong, trusting relationship with your physician, actively participate in your healthcare decisions, and prioritize regular check-ups and preventive care. By doing so, you can take proactive steps towards achieving optimal health and quality of life.