Background: Family medicine, a cornerstone of comprehensive healthcare, emphasizes the holistic well-being of individuals across age, gender, and medical conditions. Family physicians (FPs) play pivotal roles in providing a gamut of health services, including treatment, prevention, and education. This study aims to understand the patient's awareness, perception, and preferences toward family physicians in a healthcare setting.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted among adults visiting public hospitals and private clinics. Participants were selected using purposive sampling. The study included patients aged 18 years and above and excluded those with mental or psychiatric disorders, disabilities hindering response capability, and those who were disoriented.
Results: The average age of participants was 36.7 years, with the 21-30 age group representing the largest demographic (30.25%). Females constituted 64.50% of the sample. Notably, 86.75% of the participants were aware of family physicians, and 69% had consulted with them at least once. Despite 55.5% acknowledging the availability of FPs in health centers, a majority (56.75%) showed a preference for specialized doctors. The study identified a significant correlation between a patient's occupation and educational level and their attitude towards family physicians. However, other factors showed no such correlation.
Conclusion: This study underscores the role of occupation and education as determinants in shaping perceptions toward family physicians. While awareness of FPs is relatively high, preferences lean towards specialized healthcare, highlighting a potential area for outreach and education about the benefits of family medicine.