The 4C’s: Cost, Convenience, Communication, & Care!
The cost of both healthcare and healthcare insurance is outrageous and increasing every year. We all need the care but the to keep paying the bills gets harder every visit!
For years now I’ve had more patients every month who couldn’t afford care despite whatever insurance plans they may have had; and every week there’s more instances that fully insured patients can’t afford to be seen and get even the basic lab tests required to safely administer or renew their medications.
Virtual Office Visits at DrMackNOW.com are about slashing the cost of office- and insurance-based healthcare without sacrificing – and hopefully improving upon – the quality of the time and care that you get with your doctor.
The cost of healthcare has been steadily rising at every level for decades with no end in sight. The cost at the doctor’s office, the cost of procedures and of hospital stays, the cost of medications, the cost of health insurance, and the percent of our tax dollars spent providing medical care have all gone through the roof!
Across the country States are authorizing the insurance companies to increase their premiums by over twenty and even thirty percent to cover their losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Copays: the amount that has to be paid before each office visit, have grown to $25-$50 for primary care visits, $50-$100 for urgent care visits, and can be well over $100 when you need to see a specialist; and now there’s new additional copays on tests and procedures as well – even strep tests, urine tests, and X-rays done right in your doctor’s office.
Co-insurances: the percentage of what the insurance company decides the patient still has to pay towards their visit above and beyond what they pay their copay is as high as 50% with some plans; and now we’re seeing.
Deductibles: the amount we have to spend before the insurance company will pay anything at all, that are as high as $5,000, $10,000, and even $15,000.
It’s at the point today that a large majority of patients can go the entire year without their insurance company paying anything towards their healthcare bills at all!
Your premiums increase by as much as 20%-30%, you’re paying even more of your healthcare bills than ever before, you have to wait weeks or months just to see your doctor, yet your insurance company is paying less or nothing at all for your healthcare?? How can this work?
This isn’t sustainable.
We can’t afford it as individuals, families, or businesses, and we can’t afford it as a community either.
There has to be a better way to get people the care they needed at a price that they could afford.
There are so many things contribute to the cost of a visit to the doctor’s office that have nothing to do with actual patient care:
- The cost to rent or own medical space is 30%-50% more than regular commercial space, than what a restaurant or clothing outlet might pay for the same space.
- The cost of the hardware and computer programs to: (1) verify a patient’s insurance and determine what their plan requires them to pay; (2) maintain the daily schedule and keep track of the medical notes generated during the visit; (3) create the bill from those notes; and then (4) submit the bills to the clearinghouses so they the insurance companies will even look at them – each one of these add a substantial amount to the cost of each visit.
- The additional staff required for data entry and to process all this paperwork that the insurance companies and governments mandate under the name of compliance; and then
- All the time the physician spends documenting all this data that’s necessary for the insurance company, Medicare, or Medicaid to pay the bill but has nothing to do with actually taking care of the patient. This is time that doctors and providers should be seeing other patients or giving more time to the most complicated patients – not completing meaningless paperwork designed to save the insurance companies money by limiting the number of patients doctors can see or so they can deny payment because a patient’s shoe size or hair color wasn’t documented. That’s not about patient care, that’s about corporate profit, and that increases the cost of every bill.
None of these people, programs, or extra steps and paperwork contribute to your care – they just profit from it. They don’t need to be there and you don’t need to pay their bills.
DrMackNOW.com has one flat low rate for each visit and an even lower rate for follow-up visits based on the same diagnosis. Subsequent visits for the same person decrease to even lower rates and there’s plans for families and businesses that you can purchase to lock-in still lower rates.
DrMackNOW.com is designed to minimize or eliminate all together as much of the non-medical nonsense that we’re all forced to pay for when we go the doctor’s office. The Virtual Office Visit at DrMackNOW.com doesn’t need a dedicated physical place – just a smartphone or similar device. The software need only make sure that a patient can schedule to see the physician. There are no bills to process for any insurance company so there’s no extra software to be leased or staff that needs to be paid to handle the paperwork. The entire length of your visit is spent talking with your physician.
You need your doctor when you or your family members are sick, not when the office or the hospital can make time for you to come in.
Getting healthcare isn’t simply about getting in to see a doctor.
First, you’ve got to get an appointment with the doctor;
- If you can’t get something that you think is soon enough you’ve got to make the decision whether you want to go wait at an urgent care clinic somewhere.
Then, you’ve got to figure out:
- How much time it’s going to take out of your day to get there?
- How you’re going to get there if you don’t drive or it’s not at a convenient location or time of day?
- How much time you’re going to have to wait before you can get seen by the doctor and get out of there?
- How you’re to get the time off from work?
- How to cover any children during this time; and then of course, after all this has been worked out?
- How much is it going to cost?
Less than 10% of the time that you spend with your physician or their staff is actually about your diagnosis and treatment. When you add all the time and effort you spend just figuring how you can get there and then get your prescriptions afterward a trip to the doctor’s office is an enormous commitment of time and resources for a precious little amount time that someone is actually listening to you and helping you get better.
At DrMackNOW.com you can schedule yourself for any available appointment that’s convenient for you or simply contact our staff if you need something that’s not on the schedule or after hours. When that time comes you will see your doctor on your smart phone, tablet, or workstation in a fraction of the time and effort to get into someone’s office.
A Virtual Office Visit at DrMackNOW.com occurs when you can find the time to see our doctors wherever you happen to be at that time.
Undivided attention. That’s what I want when I see a doctor, that’s what I want when I bring my children or my wife to a doctor, when did anything less become OK? How is it that this acceptable – or even considered safe?? When did it become OK for the doctor to be riveted to a computer and furiously typing your answers to the questions they’re reading off the screen rather than talking directly to the you and asking their own questions?
I won’t accept that as a patient and you shouldn’t either.
During the entire Virtual Office Visit at DrMackNOW.com – except for those moments that your camera or phone is being held up to a rash or something doctor wants to see – the patient has the physician’s complete and undivided attention. The only screen the physician is looking at it during a Virtual Office Visit at DrMackNOW.com is the one that has your face on it looking right back at them! Anything less is arrogant and disrespectful at best – at worst it’s downright dangerous!
When Medicare and the insurance companies adopted the strategy that they were going to claw back at the money they would pay physicians by making them have to document that they had done at least what they defined as ‘the basics’ to treat their patients they essentially replaced all the benefit of the physicians training and experience with completing questionnaires that medical students and nurses are trained with. In the process they also replaced your time for which you’re paying to speak with a licensed professional with their bottom line and not your healthcare.
Wasting your precious time with your doctor as they plough through reams of questions written by the hospitals attorneys ensures the hospital will make as much money as they can when they bill that visit and by slowing down how fast your physicians can see patients certainly limits how many visits your insurance company might have to pay for but is any of that in your best interest? How much time is left after your doctor is done typing to actually listen to you and then ask the deeper more relevant and insightful questions? You didn’t go to the doctor for the benefit of the hospital or your insurance companies bottom line – you went because you needed help for some reason! How does any of this contribute to your care? And if it doesn’t, then why are you being forced to pay for it??
During your entire Virtual Office Visit at DrMackNOW.com you have your physician’s complete and undivided attention and they’ve been relieved of every other responsibility except listening to you and sharing their knowledge and training to help you get the care that you need and get better.
When I go to a doctor’s office I want them to look at me, not their computer screen. I want them to listen to me and then ask me as many questions as they want based on my answers, not waste my precious time with them dragging me through pages of questions written by their hospital’s attorneys trying to anticipate how my insurance company might try to deny payment. When my physician has finished their exam and we have discussed their concerns based on my presentation I want to make a plan together and begin the next step.
Whether that takes 3 minutes or 30 minutes I don’t want to spend more time taking to secretaries and assistants entering the same responses to the same questions over and over again than I get to talk with my doctor before they’re hustled out of the room to see the company’s next patient. That’s not the physician’s care that I searched out to find for my family or myself, that’s a corporation’s algorithm that I’m being forced through to protect the corporation and maximize what they get paid.
That’s not healthcare and it’s not fair. Not to me, my family, or the hard-earned money that I’m spending to get the attention that I need. At DrMackNOW! all your time with your doctor is dedicated to you, based on your stated needs, and whatever your doctor thinks is necessary for your care.
A Doctor When You Want One
The only thing that’s virtual during your visit to DrMackNOW! is your image on our screen.
Everything else is just like every other doctor’s visit – without the travel, inconvenience, time, and so much of the costs!