carrie Abernethy
    President, Desert Insurance Solutions, Inc., United States
    PCP stands for Primary Care Physician. This is the Dr you choose to be the primary manager of your care. The PCP can then refer you to specialists when needed. You will normally select your PCP from the list of contracted providers offered by your insurance company. I hope this helps.
    Answered on April 9, 2013
  2. 15786 POINTS
    Bob VineyardPRO
    Founder, Georgia Medicare Plans, Atlanta,GA
    PCP (primary care provider) is terminology normally used in HMO and POS plans where referrals are needed to see a specialist. Your PCP can be a doctor, nurse practitioner, physicians assistant, etc.

    When you first sign up for the coverage you are required to pick a PCP. You can change your primary provider in the future if you wish, but they will be considered a "gatekeeper" of sorts providing you with access to specialist care.
    Answered on April 9, 2013
  3. 11783 POINTS
    Larry GilmorePRO
    Agent Owner, Gilmore Insurance Services, Marysville, Washington State
    As others have noted PCP stands for Primary Care Physician. When using a health program that has PCP's as part of the plan, it is known as a gatekeeper plan. What that means is when you seek medical care or advice you first go through your PCP to direct you to services beyond what they do. Usually a plan with PCPs does not allow for self direction when it comes to specialist services.
    Answered on April 9, 2013
  4. 400 POINTS
    Zachary Wright
    Owner, Wright Insurance Agency, Great Pittsburgh Area
    It's just the main doctor you choose normally in HMO since they require you to see your main doctor before being referred to a specialist. He's basically your main doctor and if he is unable to treat you for whatever reason, he will recommend and refer you to another doctor in the network more qualified to treat you.
    Answered on April 16, 2013
  5. 475 POINTS
    Barry Cohn
    President, RGEB Employee Benefits, Los Angeles
    PCP stands for Primary Care Physician.  The PCP is like the old fashioned family doctor.  A number of health insurance plans require you to visit your PCP first for everything before you see a specialist.

    Doctors today are categorized as PCPs or Specialists.  Some health insuracne plans have different office visit co-pays for a PCP and a specialist, for example $20 to see your PCP and $40 to see a specialist.
    Answered on May 3, 2014
  6. 11498 POINTS
    Jason GoldenzweigPRO
    Co-Founder, TermInsuranceBrokers.com, Goldenzweig Financial Group, Las Vegas, Nevada
    PCP stands for primary care physician. This is typically a general practitioner you see for medical issues first, unless you go to a hospital's emergency room for an emergency.

    Depending on the plan type you have, you may need to see your primary care physician first before you can see a specialist - the carrier would likely require a referral form to cover the visit to the specialist, otherwise you may be subject to paying the entire visit yourself out of pocket.
    Answered on May 7, 2014
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