Positive health and wellness is a big part of the culture in Oregon
and Washington, and people truly take their health seriously. It
is perhaps unsurprising, then, that there are numerous healthcare
resources for people in the region in the areas of preventive care,
emergency services, therapeutic treatment, complementary and
alternative treatments, and much more.
There are seven major healthcare systems in
the region: Adventist Health, Kaiser Permanente, Legacy Health, Oregon Health &
Science University, PeaceHealth Medical
System, Providence Health & Services and
Tuality Healthcare. There are also a number
of outpatient Family Medicine, Internal
Medicine, and Specialty Medical Clinics that
are independent clinics who work closely
with the hospital systems when needed.
FAMILY AND INTERNAL
Annually insurance plans are changing
drastically. They require that you sign
with a medical home and a Primary Care
Physician(PCP) who will attend to your
healthcare requirements. Your PCP is the
first line in this ever-changing healthcare
environment. They track your medical
history and refer you to specialists should
you need them, They are also helpful in
navigating the larger systems especially
when you are new to the area.
In addition to the larger healthcare systems,
Portland has independent clinics throughout
the city that you might want to check out.
They welcome new patients and their environments are usually more relaxed. Just like the
larger systems, all of them practice preventive medicine. Since Portland is the home of
the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine
(OCOM), many are respectful of Complementary and Alternative medical practices.
The clinics can also offer a high quality of care
without the higher overhead costs.
EMPLOYERS FOCUS ON
Portland employers have also been on the
leading edge of workplace wellness and
the use of preventative methods to improve
the overall health and wellbeing of their
employees—thus reducing long-term
healthcare costs. Many local companies
have implemented things like stand-up
desks, along with in-office treadmills and
stationary bicycles, which help people stay
more active in workplace environments that
have traditionally led to sedentary lifestyles.
Many of these employers have also begun to
use technology to help their staff members
attain greater levels of wellness, as well.
Mobile apps like MyFitnessPal and LoseIt!
help individuals track their diets and physical activities, and the use of wearable
devices encourage users to make sure they
meet their activity goals each day.
Research shows that these employer wellness programs really work, especially when
it comes to shifting the paradigm from
reactionary treatment to the prevention of
serious illnesses. To that end, employees