Article

What does a Family Physician do?

Learn all about Family Physician duties, skills and much more. Get expert advice on how to become a Family Physician.

Photo of Brenna Goyette
Brenna Goyette
Certified Professional Resume Writer, Career Expert

Published 3 min read

A family physician is a medical doctor who specializes in the comprehensive care of individuals and families. They are trained to diagnose and treat a wide range of conditions, from the common cold to more complex diseases. Family physicians often serve as the primary care provider for their patients, providing preventive care, diagnosing and treating illnesses, and coordinating care with other specialists.

Family Physician job duties include:

  • Diagnosing and treating a wide range of conditions
  • Ordering, performing and interpreting diagnostic tests
  • Prescribing medications and therapies
  • Providing preventive care and health education
  • Caring for patients of all ages
  • Coordinating care with other health care providers
  • Making referrals to specialists as needed
  • Managing chronic health problems
  • Providing inpatient care when necessary

Family Physician Job Requirements

A family physician is a medical doctor who provides comprehensive care for patients of all ages. They are trained in all aspects of primary care, including preventive medicine, diagnosis and treatment of common illnesses, and management of chronic diseases. Family physicians typically complete four years of medical school followed by three years of residency training. After completing their residency, they must pass a national board exam to become certified. Many family physicians also choose to pursue additional training in a subspecialty, such as pediatrics or geriatrics.

Family Physician Skills

  • Listening
  • Empathy
  • Communication
  • Patience
  • Problem-solving
  • Critical thinking
  • Organization
  • Flexibility
  • Stress management
  • Time management

Related: Top Family Physician Skills: Definition and Examples

How to become a Family Physician

There are many steps to becoming a Family Physician. The first is to obtain a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. A student interested in becoming a Family Physician should consider taking coursework that will prepare them for medical school, such as biology and chemistry. After completing a bachelor's degree, the next step is to attend medical school. During medical school, students will take courses such as anatomy and physiology, as well as complete clinical rotations. Upon graduating from medical school, the student will then obtain a license to practice medicine. After completing residency training, the student will then be eligible to take the board examination to become certified as a Family Physician.

Related: Family Physician Resume Example

Related: Family Physician Interview Questions (With Example Answers)