Door to doctor's office Patients who have a long-term relationship with their primary care provider are less likely to go to the emergency department.

The United States lags behind many high-income nations when it comes to primary care access and continuity.

“Evidence shows that a strong foundation of primary care yields better health outcomes overall; greater equity in health care access and outcomes; and lower per capita health costs,” according to a new report from the Commonwealth Fund. “But in the United States, decades of underinvestment and a low provider supply, among other problems, have limited access to effective primary care.”

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