Yihan Yang, MD, is a primary care physician with Yale Medicine. In addition to general primary care, Dr. Yang treats patients with opioid use disorder and chronic hepatitis C.
Dr. Yang became interested in primary care because of the comprehensive nature of the role. “I like being the point person—or gatekeeper—for the patient’s care,” she says. “With primary care you can have all of the patient’s issues in mind and how they relate to one another.”
When Dr. Yang first meets a patient, she tries to understand who they are as a person, by asking them questions about their personal lives as well their medical conditions. If they’ve come to her from another provider, she wants to know if there is anything that the patient felt was lacking in their previous medical care. “Even though you may be treating the same disease, each person’s story is different,” says Dr. Yang. “It’s important to tailor the treatment to the patient and what they value.”
Patient education is also an important part of Dr. Yang’s care philosophy. She begins many patient interactions by asking how much a patient knows about his or her medical conditions, including the terminology, and then sets about filling in any knowledge gaps.
Dr. Yang is fluent in Mandarin.