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Ep. 49 Why Are We Insuring Primary Care? Lee Gross on the DPC Movement

Lee Gross, MD

“We’re not going to ask permission to take care of our patients.”  It is with this epiphany, that our guest on this episode became one of the pioneers and leaders of the most hopeful trend in health care today: the direct primary care or DPC movement.

Dr. Gross shares with us how the light bulb went off in his mind that there is no good reason to insure primary care and, in fact, that insuring primary care hurts everybody: patients, doctors, and society.  He walks us through his success stories and the efforts he is leading at the state and federal level to remove regulatory barriers to direct care.

Dr. Gross is the founder of Epiphany Health in North Port, FL, and is regularly consulted by lawmakers at the local, state, and national level.  He has offered testimony on behalf of the direct care movement for the US Health and Human Services Department, the US Congress, and for the White House.  He also serves as president of the Docs 4 Patient Care Foundation and he is the recipient of the 2016 HCA Frist’s Humanitarian Award and of the Beacon Award from the Free Market Medical Association for his leadership in healthcare reform.

GUEST:

Lee Gross, MD.  Twitter

LINKS:

Lee Gross.  Direct Primary Care Can Rein In America’s Out-of-Control Healthcare Costs (in the Washington Examiner)

Epiphany Health: Dr. Gross’ practice website

Doc 4 Patient Care Foundation’s website

US Department of Health and Human Services.  Reforming America’s Healthcare System Through Choice and Competition (Report)

WATCH ON YOUTUBE:

Watch the episode on our YouTube channel.

6 Comments

  1. Hans Duvefelt, MD on 12/11/2018 at 3:32 AM

    If you buy a car, you don’t expect your auto insurance to pay for gas, oil changes, wiper blades, tires or car washes, do you?

  2. Anthony M. Perry on 12/12/2018 at 3:49 AM

    What a great discussion.

    I would have liked to have heard more about the impact of DPC on Dr. Gross’ financial situation and style of practice. Michel stated that his income has suffered but Dr Gross implied his did not. What about a sense of security and ability to care for his family? What is his family situation? Also how is his practice set up as far as number of support staff, record keeping and facilities? How about his patient population. Is there a problem with attracting patients who need more care or are more demanding?

    He talked about using alternative communications to interact with patients. Does that mean, as others have reported, less numerous but more intensive office visits? In this regard I thought it was interesting that he took on post-operative care for a thyroidectomy, whereas I think almost all busy, harried FP’s would have punted to an endocrinologist. Does this mean that he has the time and ability to take on more challenging medical problems and not be just a protocol following triager who could be replaced by an NP.

    I think these are questions which will be of interest to the average non-ideological doctor considering this approach. Anish’s question about incorporating a specialist is fascinating. The movement could potentially open up medical practice to all sorts of new arrangements. Will check out the links, but definitely worth a return visit. The conversation is enlightening.

    • Michel Accad on 12/12/2018 at 4:18 AM

      Thanks, Anthony. Very good questions. I’m sure we’ll have a chance to address them on an another episode, either with Dr. Lee or with another successful DPC doc.

  3. Anonymous on 12/26/2018 at 12:07 AM

    I am a psychiatrist. Can I see insured patients at my job and see uninsured patients outside without violate Medicare rules.

  4. Anonymous on 12/26/2018 at 12:18 AM

    Is he board certified?

  5. Anthony M. Perry on 12/28/2018 at 2:48 AM

    For what it’s worth, I don’t remember any patient ever asking me if I was board certified. They mostly cared about whether I had a reputation for helping people.

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