page under development April 2019, thank you for your patience, I'm working on it...
1. Information for my Primary Care Physician Colleagues.
I create this page for my Physician colleagues. Those Doctors out there who are seeking information about Direct Primary Care. For those seeking a better way to enjoy their career. For me, it has been a better way to practice medicine. I'm happy to share my experiences with other Doctors. DPC has been better for my patients and that's what it's all about. We have a healthcare system that is less than ideal and I believe, very strongly, that DPC fixes a large part of it. Certainly not all of it, obviously, but remember about 85% of what our patients need throughout the lifespan is considered Primary Care. If we make that better we've certainly made a contribution to the greater good.
2. Why consider Direct Primary Care?
Doc, it depends on what you value. Not everyone agrees with me but I hold the belief that the Doctor is responsible for the patients. I hold the Doctor responsible for everything. Our first rule of ethics is don't harm the patients. That includes financial harm. Currently our system is causing financial harm to our patients. I believe it is the responsibility of the Physician to fix it. I do not accept "we can't." That's not good enough. If we are in a position that we can not fix a problem, then we must quite simply not be in that position. DPC removes you from the situation of capitulation to inappropriate sources. If you value Physician autonomy, authority, and sovereignty then you should consider DPC. It is a very simple business model to run. You do not need to fear running this business. It's not hard. There's lots of help.
3. Advantages to our patients
So often we hear about this "triple aim" for healthcare. The system wants better cost, care, and outcomes. How's it going? I don't think cost is doing well. Quality of "care" depends on who's definition we are using. I've spent many years as a "highest quality provider" for various insurance companies. I fail to find that useful or meaningful to me or to my patients. Outcomes, personally I think that's not to bad! But for me, DPC does a better job on not only those 3 things but also on the "quadruple aim". That 4th parameter being an environment that is an ideal place for healthcare professionals to do their work. To do their work unmolested and without moral injury. DPC does that.
In DPC my patients have better access to me, lower wait times for appointments, very low wait times on day of appointments (usually they don't even sit in my waiting room) and more face to face time with me (which creates better outcomes). By the patients definition of quality care (which is important) my patients are getting better care. By my definition of quality (which is important) my patients are getting better care. They save money on Doctor visits, lab work, imaging, and medications. Overall, I've found in DPC my patients have a better experience for a better price. I find it easier to create better outcomes. I practice medicine without interference, without delays or denials in their care. I don't spend my day asking permission to take care of my patients. That's just a few advantages to them, there are many more!
4. Advantages to the Physician
Capture, Control, and Capitulation. Those are the steps used to kill Physicians in the current system. With heartbreaking resultant statistics of burn out, helplessness, depression and suicide. We average one Doctor dead by suicide EVERY DAY in the USA, most of them Primary Care Physicians. Doctors are captured into contracts and told you can not be autonomous. We then have our behavior controlled by those who have inappropriate authority over us: effectively used by others to serve their profit driven motives rather than the well being of our patients, (whether it be bucah or an employer). Then driven into capitulation: you must bow down and obey or be denied payment for your efforts, punished for non-compliance.
For me, it boils down to ethics and truths. What do you truly need to practice Primary Care Medicine? A Doctor and a patient. That's it. I suggest that if anything is going to participate in the patient-doctor relationship it must bring value and lower costs, preferably both. If it does not, then it is not permissible. DPC is a proven, simple, sustainable business model for Primary Care Physicians to remain in Private Practice. Private Practice offers the Physician autonomy and freedom to practice medicine on their own terms directly with their patients. DPC Doctors enjoy not being under the thumb of administrators, the protocols of hospitals, or the asking permission from insurance companies to take care of patients. DPC Doctors practice medicine they way they were trained to do, with freedom and authority. DPC Doctors feel better about their work because they are able to give patients better access, more time with them, and many cost saving opportunities. Most issues that practicing Physicians classify as a waste of time are a non issue in a DPC practice. Paper burden, ICD/CPT, prior auths, etc. All. gone.
5. Advantages to Employers
Here's a fact many Physicians don't understand: Health insurance companies do not pay for healthcare. Health insurance companies pay their investors. They are highly profitable companies (you can look, they are publicly traded). A middle man. Most of our patients have health insurance, most of them get it through work. It's those employers who pay for the majority of healthcare. State the obvious: it's to expensive. Employers can find value for money when working with Direct Primary Care Doctors. Working with DPC helps them build a more cost effective benefit for their employees. There is a very rapidly growing interest in DPC for employers and I think it represents the path to a better healthcare system; or at least a good start.
6. Advantages to the Health Insurance company.
Why do we have a deductible? Why do we have a co-pay? Why do we have co-insurance and an out of pocket maximum? Reasons...or excuses? One of the principles of Direct Primary Care is that you don't need to use insurance for inexpensive things. Primary Care is not expensive and you don't need to use insurance for that. Insurance companies know that. They have no intention of paying for Primary Care. Primary Care meets about 80% of peoples healthcare needs for 6% of total healthcare costs! Insurance does not need to be used for that 6%. Health insurance companies are much more interested in the larger expenses in healthcare: admissions, surgeries, Cancer treatments, etc. In fact, if Primary Care was removed from insurance plans those health insurance companies could build a more appropriate and cost effective insurance product that could meet the needs of an individual or family. Don't believe me? Here's evidence: Christian Healthcare Sharing Ministries. It is not expensive and it functions as a catastrophic insurance plan should. It does not pay for Primary Care (mostly). DPC combined with a ministry can meet the needs of most people for much better cost. It can be done.
7. Advantages to our Healthcare system.
The historical "triple aim" of healthcare has proven inadequate. DPC offers a quadruple aim. Physician autonomy is a good thing. Physician authority is a good thing. Empowered patients will get better care. Empowered by price transparency and a Physician that works directly for them. Direct Primary Care can help our healthcare system by driving down the cost of care. It can improve patients access to care. There is growing evidence of very favorable healthcare outcomes in Direct Primary Care.
page under development...
8. Know thy enemy.
9. Answers to criticisms
10. Where to learn more. How to take the next step.
11. Tell me the bad stuff!
12. Ethics, Rights, Privileges, Obligations & Invictus!