A common complaint from patients is, “Why do I have to see so many specialists?” As Direct Primary Care doctors, our answer is, “You don’t.”
As Family Physicians at Direct Doctors, we have the training to assist your care in all areas of your health - from Diabetes to Asthma, from Allergies to Sports injuries, from basic Gynecologic issues to infections. Many patients show up to their first visit with us and show us their list of specialist doctors. We work with patients to whittle that list down to the essentials.
For example, an earlier blog discussed the case of the Smith family. When they first started coming to Direct Doctors, their daughter had an Allergist and an ENT, the mother had a Gynecologist, Endocrinologist and a Psychiatrist, and the father went to urgent care instead of primary care. We were able to eliminate all of their referrals because the issues they were dealing with at those appointments (which were required by the specialist 2 to 4 times per year!) were basic, stable issues that were easily managed at our office. The daughter’s allergy & asthma medications were prescribed here. The mom’s stable/long-term psychiatric medications, routine quarterly thyroid labs, and annual gynecology care was all handled in house.
That family saved not only money on copays and expensive lab work, but perhaps more importantly, they saved a lot of time. Shuttling your child, spouse or yourself to and from multiple medical visits per year can be time consuming - not to mention the wait-times at most speciality offices can be over an hour. At Direct Doctors, our patients don’t wait and our location is a one-stop shop (we can draw your bloodwork or send you to the lab in our building, we can order your medications straight to your pharmacy or dispense them wholesale here, and we can care for a majority of your medical needs right here in our office).
Now, don’t get me wrong, specialty care can be invaluable and essential. When those times arise where we need the expertise and help of a highly trained specialist, we certainly are willing and able to refer you to see the top notch expert available in your area. We are not limited to “networks” or “corporations” telling us which specialists we are allowed to refer to; instead, you pick the one that seems best for you (and perhaps the one that your insurance dictates you can see, depending on your coverage), and we manage the referral.
In the end, once you and we feel comfortable about the input we have gotten from the specialist, we can manage the remainder of the issue here, in most cases. So if you’re ready to ditch that list of visits, that calendar of specialists, and that hefty waiting time, send us an email or give us a call and we’d be happy to discuss more about the Direct Doctors’ Difference!
Lauren Hedde, DO; James Hedde, DO and Mark Turshen, MD are Family Physicians and Co- Founders of Direct Doctors, Inc. a Direct Primary Care Practice.