STREAM: Concierge Medicine vs. Direct Care

We found this podcast from KPCC in Southern California¬†and thought it was worth sharing with you. But not for the usual reasons. This episode takes a critical look at concierge medicine, asking, “Is concierge medicine pushing the nation’s doctor shortage over the brink? As the practice gets more affordable, is this a way for the uninsured to still get care? Is direct a la carte pricing a better way to bill patients for medical care?”


Reports like this remind us that direct care still has room for evangelizing: we are technically NOT concierge medicine. We are direct care i.e. affordable primary care that cuts out the middleman, and makes actual care, ACTUALLY accessible, all the time. We do encourage wrap around insurance, available (Obamacare-permitting) at low rates, with slightly higher deductibles. We have shown that seeing a direct primary care specialist like Atlas MD, who is able to prescribe wholesale prescriptions, and who can negotiate with specialists for additional treatment (optometry, CT-scans, etc.), can actually SAVE money for patients, and keep them healthy/safe.

We’re of the opinion that moving dissatisfied docs from the fee-for-service model into direct care OFFSETS the doctor shortage (seeing 600 patients, is more than seeing 0 patients when a doctor quits outright). A happy doctor, who encourages students to follow in his path OFFSETS the doctor shortage. Think about it: If one doctor leaves his 3,000 fee-for-service patients, it could be viewed as -3,000; but what if over time he inspires five new doctors to join direct care? Together these six doctors can see more patients, more efficiently. In the end it’s a matter of cutting the red tape.