Primary care can be found in pediatrics, internal medicine or family medicine. Most primary care physicians (PCP's) will focus on prevention of chronic disease, cancer screening, health education, and treatment of ongoing and acute issues.
A common misconception among people is that you need to be sick, injured or have a chronic condition to see your PCP. This concept is mainly driven by for-profit health insurance companies who require a 'code' to be submitted for billing purposes. In order to proactively prevent conditions from becoming an 'ICD-10 code', it's best to keep the lines of communication open with your doctor so that you can not only do things to prevent illness or injury but to also live in a state of WELLNESS.
In the Direct Primary Care (DPC) model, having regular and open communication with your doctor to discuss symptoms or concerns which arise helps with taking a proactive approach to your health. Instead of waiting for the ominous “diagnosis” to occur, wouldn’t it be better to address concerns before they get out of control?
The current healthcare model is one that does not foster wellness. We are in a system of “sick care.” To simplify, the healthcare model we are in is driven by money, not patient care. The health insurance company needs an adequate 'code' to be reimbursable and the doctor’s office needs to make sure they have enough documentation on the patient chart in order for the health insurance company to reimburse their practice. With health insurance companies reimbursing less and less, the doctor needs to see more and more patients during the day in order to survive. As a patient, this takes away from your time with your doctor to address your questions and concerns.
What if primary care was in a model where you can contact your doctor directly and not have to go through the frustrating hoops of a traditional practice? What if the doctor didn’t accept any additional fees for after hour calls or sick visits? What if the doctor had a limited number of patients so they won’t be stretched thin? This is the premise of Direct Primary Care.
To learn more about Direct Primary Care please visit www.dpcare.org.