Direct Primary Care offers unparalleled access to your doctor for everyone.
Among patients, direct primary care (DPC) is treated a bit like a unicorn. A beautiful idea that exists only in our imaginations. Except this unicorn is very real. The DPC movement is gaining traction across the country with new practices sprouting up every day.
Yet even presented with the facts, the mythology around DPC practices persists. From disbelief about a physician’s increased availability to fears around abandoning traditional insurance, patients perpetuate these superstitions as the truth. Yet of all the myths patients believe in the DPC space, these six are the most common:
Myth #1: It doesn’t exist
The most common untruth patients believe about DPC practices is that they don’t exist at all. Many patients are accustomed to the concept of primary care doctors acting as mere gatekeepers for referrals and antibiotics. The concept of a PCP diagnosing, treating and monitoring many of their health issues sounds like something from the past.
Myth #2: It’s more expensive than traditional insurance
Once patients learn that direct primary care is, in fact, real, they move on to the second most common fallacy: “It’s probably way too expensive.” However if patients added up the cost of their insurance premiums, deductibles and co-pays, they would see that direct primary care is still more affordable than traditional insurance. And yes, that includes the cost of a wraparound plan to cover emergency care and complex procedures.
Myth #3: Specialists are out-of-reach
Another common misconception is that patients will suddenly be walled off from specialists. They think if their DPC doctor is managing their care, they won’t be able to get tailored treatment from specialists. However thanks to must-have referral services like Rubicon MD, DPC physicians can offer on-demand specialist consults as needed.
Myth #4: Tests and procedures won’t be included
Similarly, patients don’t understand the expanded scope of services their DPC physician can offer. From dermatology to gynecology, membership in a direct primary care practice includes many procedures and tests that the patient previously had to undergo at another facility.
Myth #5: The doctor will be less available
The most bewildering DPC myth of all? That their doctor won’t be as responsive. Many patients believe that their physician will suddenly be out of reach under this new model of care. However, it was the insurance companies that were disincentivizing physicians from communicating with their patients between visits. Remove those pesky middle men and patients can expect a much more communicative relationship with their doctor.
Myth #6: It’s only for rich people
Beyond just the affordability issue, many patients assume direct primary care is only for rich people. The source of this particular myth? Concierge medicine, which typically caters to higher income populations who can afford insurance alongside monthly practice fees. Although concierge medicine is more widely known than direct primary care, the latter is a movement for the general population, rather than just the privileged few.
Our bet? In a few years, this unicorn won’t seem so imaginary.