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Direct Primary Care incentivizes prevention, not profit

‘We’re going to have to rescan your left breast, possibly even ultrasound it ‘,the receptionist crisply told me on the phone.  For her, it was just another day, another 1 out of 1000 phone calls she had to make. 

As a Pediatrician, Mom and an all around advocate for parental health (it truly does take a village, even if it’s just one you create for yourself),  thankfully, I know that a)this is common with fibrocystic breasts, which I’ve had since puberty b)we have a family history of fibrocystic breasts, not CA, my mother has gotten scanned and rescanned for 20 + years and it’s been ok, just the nature of imaging, probably where we are in our menstrual cycles, etc and c)overwhelmingly, things are likely to be ‘fine’, they just need to rescan and get  a much better image.  I was just one of hundreds of patients in a day’s work, 

But one thought paralyzed me today.  What if I was WRONG?

What if this was it?  What if it WAS the big “C”?

Do we want to informed by a casual phone call, as just another errand on the ‘to do’ list of a burnt out healthcare worker?  In a busy room full of the sounds of Iphones?   Told to us by someone who’s NOT the doctor, not the expert, not the one who dictates your care?  One who’s looking over their shoulder?

Or do we want a private conversation with phones turned off, with an empathetic expert who’s going to look us in the eye, take their time, and tell us what they found?  And then, NOT rush us out of there because they have 20-30 more patients to see? 

It’s never the ‘right time’ to receive bad news-especially about you and your loved ones.  Unfortunately, it happens every day, and there is not much money to be had in prevention.  Big Medicine is a big business-and the game these days is the volume of patients.  Though COVID has definitely put a monkey wrench this, overall, we ARE still living longer than ever, and are getting older, sicker and more medically complicated. 

Yet we have less and less face time with the doctor! That is, if we’re even lucky enough to really see the doctor.  Large conglomerates are buying up ERs and broke hospitals as we speak, and think doctors are far too expensive.  So they staff with folks with less education, less training, less experience.  And either fire/reduce the costs of the MDs and DOs.  They want quick, convenient, simple.  They want a profit. 

This is where Direct Primary Care comes in. 

Imagine a doctor who’s unrushed, unbothered, and just wants you to feel at home.   Who’s seeing 7-8 patients on a BUSY day. 

Who doesn’t have full waiting room full of children coughing in your face. 

Who’s goal is prevention.  Wellness.  More face to face time. 

One who actually has time to read the latest research on whatever you’re experiencing, and was actually on the phone with various experts his afternoon trying to get you into the latest trial 

Who talked to the specialist before you came in.

Who downloaded the images already and looked at them herself. 

Who won’t make you wait a few weeks/go to ERs and Urgent Cares overwhelmingly NOT staffed by doctors just to make an already bad problem WORSE. 

One who treats you like a member of their own family. 

 

Every single human being on this earth deserves this type of care. 

But our current model in the US won’t allow it. 

It is pay for play (and even then, ONLY maybe, only if you’re lucky)

Most healthcare workers are shelling out 20000+ a year for shoddy healthcare and coverage. 

 

Appointments with 4 month long wait lists.  A sick appointment you can get in only four days letter.  Unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions over the phone for your child’s ‘ear infection’ (which they CANNOT know for sure without a thorough otic exam).  And COVID has made things worse. 

A lot of undetected diseases can grow/metastasize/get worse in that time. 

Just saying.

Imagine texting a picture of that suspicious freckle on your back to your doctor whenever it strikes you, instead of ignoring it and forgetting about it until its far too late. 

And imagine being seen that same day, or next, and getting a shave biopsy within a week or two because your MD did it herself and/or called the specialist themselves and got you in!

And getting ALL THIS for cross fit membership prices monthly only!!  Which can be deducted via an HSA/FSA plan.  You can even pay us directly, and have us write you a superbill (PS what insurance does with that isn’t guaranteed). 

Health IS WEALTH.  You and your family absolutely deserve this. 

 

Come see us today.  We are ready to be a part of your village.  In the meantime, I’m going to keep exercising, focusing on prevention, and calmly wait for my rescan. 

Also, to my mommas-don’t neglect your own health for that of your children, ok, if you have a family history of Breast/Ovarian CA, and/or you’re from ages 35-40 and up, ask your primary care doctor about getting screened ASAP. 

Sometimes, to save our families, weve got to put the masks on ourselves. 

Blessings, Dr Uma

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