Direct Primary Care 101 - Christian Healthcare Centers

Direct Primary Care 101: A Model To Redeem Healthcare

Direct Primary Care (DPC) is a simple, free-market-based, affordable and convenient way to resolve many of the problems that plague healthcare. This document provides a basic overview of the model of healthcare delivery that is sweeping the United States; a model that restores freedom to doctors and provides personalized care for patients.


DPC is simple. It is no more complicated than the drive up window at your local dry cleaners. You stop in for service and you pay for it. Direct primary care medical offices operate much the same way. No deductibles, no co-pays, no insurance cards or insurance pre-authorizations. Just straightforward medical care when you need it.


DPC is free-market based. In a free market, no one forces people to buy a product nor does it tell consumers where to buy it or how they must use it. Why should it be different with healthcare? But it is. Since the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (a misnomer if there ever was one), the federal government requires every breathing American to have a health plan – insurance. The insurance mandate alone is a violation of free market principles because it forces people to purchase a product whether they want to or not. To make matters worse, the feds also require that the mandated health plan include particular services, even if you do not want or need them, e.g., maternity coverage for a 65-year-old male. The federal government also controls how much the plan costs, how much doctors get paid and thousands of other aspects of your healthcare. So much for the home of the brave and the land of the free!

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Direct Primary Care avoids much of the government control by kicking bureaucrats and insurance companies out of the exam room and keeping them out of the business office. Although an insurer may provide some comfort when the fender of your automobile needs to repair following a crash, an insurance bureaucrat has no place in the exam room at your doctor’s office. Government bureaucrats or insurance companies should not have a say about the medical care you receive. DPC protects the doctor-patient relationship in a way doctors in insurance-based practices cannot. In a DPC practice, the doctor works for you, not the insurance company.


DPC is affordable. Through the payment of a small monthly fee, the patient secures access to high-quality, timely medical care. It functions the way a gym membership does; you pay the monthly gym membership fee, you get unlimited access to all of the equipment and programs offered in that particular gym. Likewise in a DPC practice, you gain unlimited access to all of the services provided within that practice without additional co-pays or having to meet deductibles. Just imagine getting as much as 90% of your healthcare needs for the cost of a cell phone bill!


DPC is convenient. One of the reasons companies such as Amazon, Netflix and Uber have become fixtures in the lives of millions is convenience. Why isn’t your healthcare as convenient as buying a book, streaming a movie or getting a ride to the airport? One of the main obstacles is most medical practices are geared to serve the needs of those who pay them rather than the people for whom they provide services. Insurance companies require a lot of data processing, which requires people. Generally, for each clinician engaged in patient care there are two to three people in the back office processing insurance claims, making phone calls to check on claims, etc. All of that costs a lot of money, which is why most doctors have to maintain a patient population of 2200 patients to pay their bills and make a modest income. The constant intrusion of insurance “compliance” to secure reimbursement impedes convenience. In order to see 20-25 patients each day, a doctor cannot spend time talking to patients on the phone, replying to emails or making house calls. Too many people who have little or nothing to do with patient care depend on the doctor to generate as much revenue as possible so everyone gets paid. The one who loses in this scenario is the patient.


Just as Amazon, Netflix and Uber lowered their overhead by “cutting out the middleman,” DPC doctors can lower theirs by eliminating insurance contracts, which means not hiring people to process claims. The net result is DPC doctors can maintain smaller patient loads so they can provide more convenient, personalized medical care, which means same day/next day in-office appointments, 24/7 access by telephone, web cam, Skype, Facetime, or even home visits.


DPC is patient-focused. Why do DPC doctors and their patients consistently report higher levels of satisfaction? Doctors like the DPC model because it allows them to spend all the time a patient needs. Time is the most precious gift doctors have to give, and it is time spent with a person that contributes to the formation of a personal relationship. Nationwide surveys of doctors reveal that the number one complaint is not having the time to form a real doctor-patient relationship. DPC doctors are happier because they have a way to recover those relationships with their patients. Doctors get to actually provide healthcare instead of merely manage symptoms. Patients love DPC because they have a real relationship with their doctor.

Direct Primary Care 101 - Christian Healthcare Centers

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