Two weeks ago, I participated in the Future Direction of Healthcare: An Expert Panel discussion. It was an honor to be invited by the American Medical Association student chapter at Wayne State University School of Medicine.
The Panel included Abdul El-Sayed, former director of the Detroit Health Department, Mohammed Arsiwala, MD the President of Michigan Urgent Care, Michigan State Senator Patrick Colbeck of the 7th Senate District, Dr. Jack Sobel the Dean of WSU SOM, and myself a Family Medicine Doctor with Plum Health Direct Primary Care.
A spectrum of viewpoints was represented on the panel. Abdul El-Sayed and Dean Sobel expressed more liberal-minded viewpoints about having more universal healthcare coverage and having a single-payer option, aka Medicare for all. Senator Colbeck took a more conservative approach, advocating for the repeal and replacement of the Affordable Care Act.
Interestingly, all agreed that Direct Primary Care as an excellent healthcare delivery model. From the conservative perspective, DPC delivers healthcare services at a known cost. DPC clinics like Plum Health offer a free market option, where consumers can compare prices because the prices are known and stated clearly.
From the liberal perspective, Plum Health makes primary care services affordable and accessible to a wider group of people. For $49/month for adults and for $10/month for children, citizens have access to a Family Medicine doctor that knows them well. This community-focused approach makes Direct Primary Care an appealing option.
In this time of political divisiveness, I'm glad that our leaders and legislators can agree that Direct Primary Care is an excellent options for health care services. Selfishly, I want this type of care to be available for my parents, grandparents, siblings, loved-ones and friends. In this model, patients can hold their doctors accountable and doctors have to be more responsive to their patients' needs.
Finally, this was a great opportunity for me to inspire medical students to practice in this way. I hope that more med students consider Direct Primary Care as a viable career option.
Thanks so much for reading!
- Paul Thomas, MD