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Who's Who On Your Care Team

The Medical Providers You Might Meet During Your Health Care Journey

There are hundreds of caregiving roles filled by highly trained, specialized employees who work both directly with patients and behind the scenes. Get to know members of your care team, and feel more confident in your Valley Health experience.

Physicians

  • Primary care physicians (who may be trained in family medicine, internal medicine or pediatrics) are the primary medical contact for most patients. Treating patients for new and ongoing illnesses, chronic conditions or nonemergency injuries, their focus is on checkups and preventive care. Hospitalists provide care oversight to inpatients, offering continuity of care during a hospital stay. Specialists have expertise in disease- or organ-specific treatments and diagnoses due to additional training and board certification in, for example, cardiology, urology or dermatology.

Physician Assistants (PAs)

  • These licensed healthcare providers work under the supervision of a physician and conduct exams, order tests, diagnose and treat illness, write prescriptions, and advise patients about preventive care.

Nurse Practitioners (NPs)

  • These nurses with advance training order tests, treat chronic and acute conditions, prescribe medication, and provide preventive care under the supervision of a physician.

Nurses/Registered Nurses (RNs)

  • These professionals manage and implement the care plan for patients in hospitals, physician practices and other settings, and provide support and care services under the direction of a physician.

Certified Nurse Assistants (CNAs)

  • Also known as nursing assistants, CNAs help patients with quality-of-life needs (bathing, meals, bed positioning, etc.), and take vital signs and answer call bells for hospitalized patients.

Imaging, Laboratory and Other Diagnostic Staff

  • Specially trained employees perform a range of diagnostic services for both inpatients and outpatients. The services and tests they administer include imaging (such as x-rays, sonograms and MRIs), bloodwork, pathology and biopsy.

Rehabilitative Therapists

  • Physical, occupational and speech therapists are a few of the professionals who provide services designed to restore movement, self-care and quality of life to those with developmental, age and/or injury-related dysfunction that impact daily living and/or communication.

Respiratory Therapists

  • These individuals care for patients who have trouble breathing—for example, from a chronic respiratory disease, such as asthma, emphysema or cystic fibrosis. Their patients range from premature infants with undeveloped lungs to elderly patients who have diseased lungs. Some provide emergency care to patients suffering from heart attacks, drowning, or inhalation trauma.

Case Managers, Social Workers and Care Navigators

  • These individuals assist with assessment, planning, facilitation, care coordination, evaluation, and advocacy for options and services to meet an individual's comprehensive health needs. They collaborate with other providers, local nonprofits, government agencies, and other organizations to ensure patients have resources needed.

Hospital Pharmacists

  • Pharmacists, in collaboration with pharmacy technicians, compound sterile products for patients including medications given intravenously, such as antibiotics and chemotherapy, and monitor and assess the safe administration of oral and other medications and drugs.

Integrative Services Team

  • These employees support patient care in a variety of ways through nutrition services, environmental services (housekeeping/janitorial), sterile processing, patient transport, etc.