Welcome to the Centra Medical Group
Centra is not just a regional health care system of three hospitals. We are the Centra Medical Group -- your network of local family practices, primary care physicians, and medical and surgical specialists. We understand that with today's fast-paced lifestyle, having your family's physicians close by is essential.
With over 150 physicians, specialists and surgeons covering the greater Lynchburg area and spanning from Danville to Farmville and Moneta to Big Island, the Centra Medical Group brings to your community primary care physicians, cardiologists, cardiothoracic surgeons, gerontologists, neurosurgeons, physiatrists, psychiatrists, therapists, and urologists.
Through the Centra Medical Group, you are connected to Centra's wider health care system, where award winning services, access to advanced technologies, and a full complement of specialties are available to meet the medical needs of you and your family.
Selecting a primary care provider
What is the importance of yearly check-ups and screenings?
Instead of calling them routine physicals, these annual appointments are best described as health maintenance exams. These are not just physicals. It's about maintaining your health. Ideally, primary care providers prefer to encourage healthy habits rather than addressing problems during sick visits.
Car owners understand the value in routine maintenance during a vehicle's life. Special care is taken with inspections when vehicles reach certain milestones. The same rule applies to each of us. Screenings and exams are age related and designed to catch diseases early. It's much easier to treat diseases through early detection rather than waiting for symptoms to appear.
Patients must take an active role in their healthcare, working closely with a trusted primary care doctor for one-on-one health education. During yearly exams, physicians discuss nutrition, exercise and age-appropriate cancer screenings. By going through a patient's typical meal plans, a physician can suggest small changes that can make dramatic differences.
Why is it important to select a primary care provider?
Instead of jumping from practice to practice, patients should settle in with a doctor's office to build a trusting relationship. By forging a bond with a primary care doctor, patients will benefit from their knowledge of family health history, medications and overall well-being. Selecting a primary care provider is an important decision. Choosing the right physician is one of the most important steps you can take toward improving your health. Finding the right care doesn't happen by accident. There are plenty of good doctors to choose from, but selecting a new physician requires thorough research and investigation.
What should patients take into consideration when selecting a primary care provider?
All doctors do not have the same skills or provide the same care. Your new physician should match your unique healthcare needs and your personal preferences:
- Skills. A family physician can handle most common health concerns. Specialists are physicians who have completed general medical education and have trained for a number of years in a select area of medicine. If you have a specific and complicated medical condition, you may need specialty care.
- Office location. If you have transportation problems or have a condition that might need immediate care, you might consider a doctor who has an office close by.
- Gender. Do you prefer a male or female doctor?
- Age. Some people might feel more comfortable with an older or younger doctor.
- Ethnicity. People from other countries might be able to communicate better with a doctor who speaks the same language.
Darlene Nigro, D.O., is a primary care physician at Centra Medical Group - Bedford Medical, which is accepting new patients. To schedule an appointment, please call 540.586.7273.