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An Analysis of Direct Primary Care

Mark Twain said “There is no such thing as a new idea. It is impossible. We simply take a lot of old ideas and put them into a sort of mental kaleidoscope.” Paying cash for primary care is not new, but it’s a model that’s resurging after decades of being overly tangled with insurance*.

Direct primary care (DPC) is a cash-based membership model for more rational delivery of care, benefiting both doctors and patients. It reduces care to the fewest number of intermediaries and stodgy layers, while allowing patients to insert insurance for large claims.

Ed Winters Ronaldson of HealthDirectly and I, are pleased to publish a new whitepaper on DPC. It takes the novel approach of combing survey data, utilization data from multiple DPC practices, trends in claims data pre- and post-DPC implementation from 19,000 members, and public data on an alternative DPC-leaning model.

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*Insurance is designed for tail risk, to protect against financial ruin. 

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