Dave was a new patient to my DPC (Direct Primary Care) practice, but he had been my patient previously when I was a traditional doctor.
After I had addressed his knee pain, there was a lull. He said, “I have another question.” Then he rolled his eyes and said, “I know you’ll have to charge me an extra co-pay.” We both laughed.
Yes, in traditional medical practices we had to make sure we billed for everything we did. It was as much fraud to under-charge as to over-charge. Random charts would be reviewed to make sure we were “compliant” with all the regulations. We spent time in meetings discussing ICD10 codes and various regulations. It didn’t help patient care, but it was part of making sure we got paid by insurances for our services.
One of the frustrations for patients is when they would be seen for a “wellness exam.” If any other problem was addressed, such as a cough or a pain, they would be billed an extra co-pay.
Oh, how great it is to be free of insurance requirements. In my DPC (Direct Primary Care) practice, patients pay a monthly membership fee, and in exchange they get unlimited office visits and communication. So Dave’s extra questions didn’t cost him anything.