Nick Desai, Founder and CEO of HeyRenee sets the stage at Hint Summit 2022 with his talk, 'Private Practice of the Future,' reminding everyone in the room why they are there. Although the value and affordability of direct primary care is well known amongst this audience who own, work in, or work with direct primary care practices, to the outside world it is still not really understood. People think that direct primary care is a concierge service or a higher level of care that comes at a high cost, which only those who already have great health care benefits and financial resources can access. Nick Desai contends that direct primary care is the most effective way to get quality care to the uninsured and people in marginalized and socio-economically depressed communities.
“Our philosophy [is] that healthcare is a fundamental human right and that we need to make sure that great healthcare is available to everybody.” - Nick Desai, HeyRenee
There is a big problem in healthcare today with increased costs that are not justified since there are not better results. Life expectancy improved by 10 years between 1970 and 1990 while expenditures in healthcare increased by 2.5 times (adjusted for inflation). However since then, life expectancy has stayed the same while healthcare costs have quadrupled. What Americans pay out-of-pocket for healthcare has doubled (inflation adjusted) over the past 50 years while the percentage of out-of-pocket costs for healthcare in relation to total healthcare spending is much lower.
There is no doubt that a tremendous amount of waste exists in healthcare spending because doctors make less than ever while corporations in medicine bring in substantial profits. Additionally, while there has been zero percent growth in the number of physicians, there has been 5,500% growth in health care operations roles.
Within this same fee-for-service corporate-run healthcare system, doctors spend only 27% of their time practicing medicine with the rest of their time allocated to operations. This model is not only detrimental to providing quality care to patients, but it is also burning out doctors. Doctors have the highest suicide rate than any other profession. Corporate-owned medicine is why healthcare costs more, doctors are depressed and burned out, and people are getting less quality care, so moving doctors to private practice is essential in improving outcomes.
“Today the largest employers of doctors in America are the largest health systems and insurance companies in America and to me, that is a massive conflict of interest because the people who are trying to make sure that you use healthcare less, are employing the people who want to give you great healthcare.” - Nick Desai
Nick asserts that bringing healthcare to the home is the private practice of the future. While it is relatively easy for someone who is in a big metropolitan area such as Denver, CO or Los Angeles, CA to find a doctor, about 80% of Americans live in what Nick calls, “doctor deserts,” where because of bureaucracy or geography, people are waiting anywhere from 2 weeks to 2 months to see a doctor.
Under the current model of healthcare ruled by corporate medicine, people are not getting better and they’re instead only getting disease management. If doctors are liberated to spend most of their time practicing medicine, resulting in adequate time to get to know their patients and understand social determinants by visiting patients at home, a whole new level of care can be delivered.
Learn more and watch Nick Desai discuss where health tech falls short and how the removal of bureaucracy associated with waste in the current healthcare system, and market forces can be applied to benefit a new model of healthcare for improved health outcomes.