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Direct Primary Care - March 2018
As a means to reduce rising health care costs, innovative
solutions are rising to the surface. One such solution is known as direct
primary care (DPC).
What is DPC?
In this model, physicians, pediatricians and internists charge
a monthly membership fee that covers most of what the average patient needs,
including visits and drugs at lower prices, instead of accepting insurance for
routine visits. As a result, DPC can provide substantial savings to patients.
Consider the following:
- Cost of visit—Free with monthly
- Copay cost—No copays
- Length of visit—Typically 30-60
minutes (traditional doctor’s office visits are less than 20 minutes)
Because they don’t operate under the typical fee-for-service
model, many DPC providers are able to spend more time with their patients.
Research shows that patients who have a good relationship with their doctor
receive better care and are happier with the care they receive.
Does DPC replace the
need for health insurance?
No, in fact, DPC providers recommend that their patients
have some form of insurance to protect themselves in the event of an emergency.
Remember, DPC is for primary care. It
will not take care of catastrophic injuries, surgeries or trips to the
How popular is DPC?
DPC is emerging as a way to combat rising health care costs
and maintain a high quality of care. Those who partner with the right providers
may find great success with this type of health care model. While DPC has grown
steadily in the past few years, the market is still slow. Despite this, DPC
providers and supporters are optimistic about its future.
As health care costs continue to climb and the prevalence of
expensive chronic conditions increases, the importance of choosing the right
doctor and type of care is exemplified. DPC presents a way for employees to
receive more personalized health care while containing their health care costs.
Moreover, DPC can be an attractive option for employees with high deductible
health plans and health savings accounts, as it would provide them with the
option of receiving care without paying high out-of-pocket costs.
It may be worth it for you to further investigate this model
and evaluate if it’s right for your organization. For more information on DPC,
please contact us today.