How to Choose a PCP
Your primary care provider (PCP) will provide most of your basic healthcare, including annual checkups, immunizations and care when you aren’t feeling well. Choosing the right PCP is an important decision. Your PCP will get to know you, to understand your needs and be a part of your care team.
Your first step is finding a provider that is part of the Senior Whole Health of New York NHC provider network. If you’re a new member and your current PCP’s not in our network, you may need to choose a new doctor. Read more about how to choose a doctor here. Look for a PCP who:
- Is accepting new patients
- Is convenient (nearby, wheelchair accessible, etc.)
- Speaks your language or has staff who do
- Understands your culture
As soon as you can or within  days of choosing a PCP, make an appointment – even if you’re feeling good. When your PCP gets to know you when you’re healthy, they’re better able to care for you when you aren’t.
A specialist is a doctor who provides healthcare for a specific disease or part of the body. There are many kinds of specialists. If you need care that your PCP cannot give, your PCP may send you to a specialist. They will give you what is called a referral. This will let you see the specialist if they are in the Senior Whole Health of New York NHC provider network. If we do not have a specialist in the Senior Whole Health of New York NHC network to provide the care you need, we will get you the care you need from a specialist outside of the Senior Whole Health of New York NHC network. You must get approval from us before seeing an out-of-network specialist.
Getting care outside the service area
If you plan to be away from home or outside our service area, please notify your Care Manager as early as possible so we can arrange any needed services. We’ll work with you and continue to provide non-emergency covered services to the extent they can be arranged with area providers.
If you are out of the area and have an emergency, go to the nearest emergency facility.
Deciding where to get emergency care
When you need care right away, there are options.
Emergencies are times when there could be serious danger or damage to your health if you don’t get care right away. If you have an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest hospital emergency room (ER). Call your PCP and Senior Whole Health of New York NHC as soon as you can after you visit the ER. Your PCP can help with your follow-up care.
An urgent medical condition is when care is needed for a sudden illness, injury, or condition that is not an emergency but needs to be treated in the next 24 to 48 hours. If you need help finding a nearby urgent care center call Member Services at 1-877-353-0185, 24 hours a day for guidance. Our nurses can advise you on where to go when you need care. Call your PCP and Senior Whole Health of New York NHC as soon as you can after you visit urgent care. Your PCP can help with your follow-up care.
When you’re sick or hurt, always call your PCP first (unless it’s an emergency). Even if you call outside of their normal hours, someone from the office should be on call and able to help.