A 2018 survey done by the West Health Institute and NORC at the University of Chicago revealed that nearly 50% of people did not seek medical attention when they were sick or injured, despite 80% of those surveyed having health insurance. These numbers are concerning. It shows that Americans are rightly concerned about the cost of healthcare being too high!
In a year of a presidential election, we have seen plenty of back and forth amongst politicians about who or which party has the ‘best’ healthcare plan. But should we really rely on politicians to come up with the solution?
Direct Primary Care is a concept that has been sharply growing in popularity recently and for many good reasons. I don’t pretend that it is the complete solution to a broken healthcare system; there are many components requiring fixing. However, it is a step (or perhaps a leap) in the right direction.
Direct Primary Care gives you a direct relationship with your doctor without the interference of any third party. Think of it like the healthcare your grandfather was used to back in the day. A personal physician who knows you well and is aligned with your interests.
Instead of being a case number in a large panel of patients, you are seen as a ‘whole person’ in a much smaller panel size. That is not to say other Primary Care physicians don’t treat their patients as ‘whole people’, but certainly the time they get with each patient is severely limited (through no fault of their own) in the current system.
Along with this, due to no third party billing, the office overhead is much reduced for the Direct Primary Care physician and he or she has negotiated lab and radiology prices at up to a 90% discount. For example, a CBC (Complete Blood Count) in our office can be done for $2!
The patients can also make an appointment for the same or next day as opposed to waiting weeks to get in to the doctor’s office. Visits are generally relaxed and never rushed. Patients have access to you after hours and can use technological solutions for many common problems such as sending you a picture of a rash. All this for one low monthly fee!
While acknowledging that insurance is very important to have, Direct Primary Care encourages its use in the proper way. Insurance is meant to protect against catastrophic and unforeseeable losses, not to be used to pay for a blood test that costs the amount of a pack of gum.
Direct Primary Care or DPC not only works extremely well for individuals and families, but businesses too. Under this model, businesses can save a tremendous amount of money while providing their employees true access to quality health care.
In our modern times this concept seems so unique and revolutionary, but the truth is it is just taking primary care back to the way it was meant to be.