As the winds of medical practice have shifted over the last several years, many physicians are calling into question the medical model under which we have worked for the last couple decades. It is an interesting discussion to understand how we ended up in this medical system but that is for a later date.
One physician who is breaking the trend is Rob Lamberts, MD. He is a Meds/Peds physician in Georgia who recently decided to step out of the insurance based medical system and return to the simple paradigm of one doctor and one patient. He only accepts cash for services and that is on a monthly membership basis. The idea being is to engage patients in overall health and be motivated to help them stay well.
Here is a link to a recent editorial he wrote about what is wrong with our problem based medical system. I really like the editorial even if I don’t agree with it all. At Trinity we strive to provide comprehensive care that allows for patients to be well (and stay well) and not need our services. We don’t want to establish a group of dependent people who need medications and labs ad infinitum. Insurance companies, however, take the opposite approach. They have started to develop programs of ‘quality assurance’ that measure physicians and other health care providers with certain metrics of health. For instance, if a patient with a diagnosis of diabetes doesn’t receive appropriately timed blood and urine evaluations I am penalized. It doesn’t matter that the patient is doing so well they no longer fall under those guidelines nor does it matter if an abnormal result will fail to change our treatment option.
Give this commentary a read and consider where our health care system should go in the coming years. We have a choice.