Chronic Conditions

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Get the care you need for chronic health conditions.

What is a Chronic Condition?

Chronic conditions are health issues that last one year or more. They need ongoing medical help or limit your ability to do daily activities or both. Your care team is here to help you have a healthier life with your chronic health condition.

Working with Your Care Team to Stay Healthy

Your care team is your partner in keeping the condition under control and helping you stay healthy. Your care team includes your Primary Care Provider (PCP). Your PCP is your main doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant. Your care team might have other people, like a heart or kidney doctor, or someone who helps you learn about healthy foods.

Your care team can help you take healthy steps, like being more active and quitting smoking.

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Here are some common chronic health conditions:

Asthma

Asthma is a condition that affects the air passages (or airways) leading into your lungs and can make it hard for you to breathe. It can also make you cough a lot. Asthma breathing problems often come and go. Some people with asthma only have symptoms once in a while. Other people have symptoms every day. While asthma can’t be cured, you can work with your health care provider to control your asthma.

Source: sfhp.org/wp-content/files/member_materials/health_education/fact_sheets/AsthmaPassport_ENG.pdf

Depression

Depression is more than just feeling down or having a bad day. When a sad mood lasts for a long time and interferes with normal, everyday functioning, you may be depressed. Many helpful treatments for depression are available. Treatment for depression can help reduce symptoms and shorten how long the depression lasts. Treatment can include getting therapy and/or taking medications. Your doctor or a qualified mental health professional can help you determine what treatment is best for you.

Source: cdc.gov/tobacco/campaign/tips/diseases/depression-anxiety.html

Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic health condition that affects how your body turns food into energy. But by taking action, you can live a healthy life and help prevent the complications of diabetes. The best way to take care of yourself when you have diabetes is to work with your health care team to keep your blood sugar, blood pressure, and cholesterol levels in a healthy range.

Sources: cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/diabetes.html, sfhp.org/diabetes-awareness/

Heart Disease

The term “heart disease” refers to several types of heart conditions. In the United States, the most common type of heart disease is coronary artery disease (CAD), which can lead to heart attack. You can greatly reduce your risk for heart disease through lifestyle changes and, in some cases, medicine.

Source: cdc.gov/heartdisease/

Hepatitis C

Hepatitis C is a liver infection caused by the hepatitis C virus (HCV). Hepatitis C can range from a mild illness lasting a few weeks to a serious, long-term illness. Chronic hepatitis C can be a lifelong infection if left untreated. Chronic hepatitis C can cause serious health problems, including liver damage, cirrhosis (scarring of the liver), liver cancer, and even death. Getting tested for hepatitis C is important, because treatments can cure most people with hepatitis C in 8 to 12 weeks.

Sources: cdc.gov/hepatitis/hcv/cfaq.htm, cdc.gov/hepatitis/hcv/

High Blood Pressure

High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is blood pressure that is higher than normal. Your blood pressure changes throughout the day based on your activities. Having blood pressure measures consistently above normal may result in a diagnosis of high blood pressure (or hypertension). San Francisco Health Plan encourages you to get your blood pressure checked regularly to help you and your doctor know if you are at risk for a heart attack or stroke.

Sources: cdc.gov/bloodpressure/about.htm, sfhp.org/heart-health/

You and your doctor can work on a plan that works for you and your specific health condition. Your plan will help you keep track of your health, manage your symptoms, and know when to call your doctor or get emergency help.

If you qualify for Medi-Cal, contact our enrollment team to get the care you need. If you are an SFHP Member and have one of these chronic conditions and need care, please contact SFHP Customer Service.