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The difference between a geriatrician and a GP

As Australian’s age, their care needs may become more complex and require specialist treatment. It is important for older Australian’s to recognise what the best treatment is for them, so they can continue to live healthily and independently. This article will break down the differences between Geriatricians and General Practitioners (GPs).

What does a GP do?

GPs treat a wide range of mild, chronic, and acute medical conditions. They will carry out comprehensive medical assessments, contribute to care plans and collaborate with pharmacists on medication management, and provide recommendations on whether extra is required. 

What does a Geriatrician do?

A Geriatrician is a specialist doctor who provides care for seniors over the age of 65. Geriatricians are experts at treating multiple conditions and have had specialist training in geriatric medicine. They can assist with integrating older Australians care if dealing with multiple complex health issues

What do Geriatricians treat?

Some older adults have complex health needs. They might have many medical problems and use different types of medicine. They are also more likely to be frail, to have falls and to have conditions like dementia or heart disease.

In many cases, they act as the primary care for an elderly individual and the primary doctor who knows the overall medical history, current conditions, treatments, and medication list for a paitient.

Most Geriatricians have expertise in dealing with people who have multiple conditions. However some of them speciliase in pareticular areas and treating certainc onditions, including dementia.

Geriatricians help manage (but not limited to):

  • Dementia and other cognitive problems.
  • Problems with mobility and frailty.
  • Incontinence.
  • Nutrition.
  • Medicines, as well as other medical issues.

A Geriatrician will normally conduct a comprehensive assessment to assess your physical, mental, and social situation so they can provide the best type of care.

Benefits of Home Visiting Geriatricians

Geriatricians work in hospitals, clinics, residential aged care facilities, as well as home visits for clients depending on the type of care required.

There are many benefits of home visits for seniors:

  • Comfort: The primary benefit of home care is that loved ones can stay at home for longer, ultimately the place that is the most comfortable and familiar. This allows seniors to use their own amenities, sleep in their own bed, and continue their daily routines. Residing in a supportive, familiar care environment can be beneficial for clients receiving care especially for those suffering from progressive conditions like dementia.
  • Personalised Care: Rather than having to adjust and abide to scheduling along with routines in a care facility. A home care visit allows a geriatrician to provide a flexible home care plan to fully suite a senior Australian’s needs.
  • Independence: Staying at home for longer while receiving care can maintain a sense of independence for seniors. Depending on the type and duration of care required on a day-to-day basis, allowing clients to feel independent from their carer and family members is important to seniors.

Availability between Geriatricians and GPs

GPs are more accessuble across Australia through telehealth, websites, emails, and even online platforms if preferred.

As Geriatricians are a specilaist doctor, they are less available and frequent, even more so in rural and remote areas. They can be accessed similarly to GPs, who can also refer Geriatricians if speciliast treatment is required to take care of a loved one’s complex health issue.

For more information regarding Home Care, go to our resources page

For more information on the Home Care Package program, go to our FAQs

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Contact Trilogy Care

Please contact Trilogy Care on 1300 459 190 for any further information.

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