Our country’s healthcare is complicated, expensive, and littered with red tape.
But these two Virginia doctors are turning the system on its head.
And their model has patients and healthcare workers beaming to jump on board.
Wait times cut, visit lengths jump under new care model
Dr. Andrew Anderson used to work with a big medicine group.
Bogged down in paperwork and spending only 20 minutes with each patient, Dr. Anderson thought medicine should be different.
When speaking with The News and Advance, Dr. Anderson had this to say:
I found myself going to monthly meetings and all we talked about was how to record stuff in the chart so insurance acknowledges it. I wanted to really take good care of patients and things were getting in the way.
At that time, Dr. Anderson had accumulated nearly 2,400 patients, and had no time to spend giving personalized care to each one. His patients had just become numbers for insurance companies.
That’s when he found a way to cut out insurance companies altogether and still give quality care at a low price.
He’s opening a Direct Primary care office that cuts out insurance middlemen and a big chunk of the paperwork.
Patients get unlimited visits, calls, or texts for no extra charge
His patients will have unlimited access to their doctor for a monthly fee lower than a typical insurance plan.
What’s more, patients could call, text, or email their medical questions and even receive a signed prescription while on vacation.
Dr. Anderson’s plans are straightforward, too.
He’ll charge $80 a month per person, or $135 for couples and $165 for a family of five – lower than many insurance plans.
Doctors using Direct Primary care don’t charge co-pays, there’s no insurance card or filings, and they don’t send home bills like most doctors.
The whole point is cutting out middlemen to better serve patients.
Doctors enjoy more time with patients and spending less on paperwork and billing
Anderson explains that Direct Primary care focuses on one-on-ones with patients, shorter wait times, and easy access in the office, on the phone, or online.
This is especially helpful for patients with complicated conditions or people who appreciate the extra attention from their doctor.
Anderson says that patients have between 30 and 60 minutes for each visit.
Another Virginia Doctor, Douglas Farrago, is delighted with how many new offices like these are opening up.
Direct Primary Care offices numbered around 40 in 2012, but now there are more than 1,500.
Farrago says he has a less stressful day and can spend more time with each patient.
He’s sure he’ll never go back.
“Imagine training your whole life to do a job and you’re miserable and then there’s hope about being the doctor we dreamed to be,” he told the News and Advance. “No billing codes, no metrics, you just work for the patient.”
Is a care model like this too good to be true?
Have these doctors found an answer to the country’s healthcare crisis?
Let us know in the comment section below.