Direct Primary Care

The Positive Correlation Between Direct Primary Care and COVID-19

April 11, 2021

Harsha Moole, M.D., MBBS

Ever since COVID-19 was tagged officially as a global pandemic over a year ago, COVID-19 has had sweeping, profound effects on medical systems, as well as societies and economies as a whole. It's very interesting to note that COVID-19 has urged health care systems to reorganize to better respond to the pandemic's needs and challenges.

DPC AND COVID-19

With primary care being the first point of contact for patients, COVID-19 thrust Direct Primary Care into the spotlight, proving to both patients and primary care physicians alike how efficient and capable this membership-based health care model is.

Respondents from the Global Forum on Universal Health Coverage and Primary Health Care reveal that although much attention focuses on hospital care, only a small percentage of COVID-19 patients are hospitalized. Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 have transmuted into allies, and it makes sense given that primary care is at the forefront of managing bulk of COVID-related care.

The relationship between Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 is only strengthened because primary care is 'first in, last out' throughout this pandemic. Primary care is primarily involved in the onset, peak, and recovery of every patient's COVID-19 journey. This includes everything from initial diagnosis and treatment to post-COVID health management.

Given all the benefits it brings to the table, Direct Primary Care and COVID-19, as a tandem, offer a variety of priceless benefits to patients as well as their loved ones. This article gives you the lowdown on what Direct Primary Care is and the valuable role it plays in the COVID-19 pandemic.

DPC AND COVID-19: Role of Direct Primary Care in the COVID-19

Direct Primary Care (DPC) is fully equipped to take care of patients and deal with the economic impact of the pandemic.

From providing Unrestricted, 24/7 access to their primary care physician's personal line, direct home visits and emergency consultations to heavily discounted out-patient services and medication, these are Direct Primary Care benefits that are now more priceless than they already are as the world continues to battle through a pandemic.

Unlike its traditional, insurance-based counterpart, where urgent appointments and convenient access to your physician are unheard of, Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 are proven to be more effective in providing the immediate care, and attention patients need.

This pandemic has put Direct Primary Care in a unique position, thanks to its distinctive characteristics such as continuity and comprehensiveness of care, immediate responsiveness, and coordination between varied medical disciplines.

In light of this, Direct Primary Care plays a crucial role in the following aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic response:

DPC Covid Guidance : Education and Communication under Direct Primary Care COVID Guidance

In the context of Direct Primary Care and COVID-19, many patients turn to their primary care physicians for trusted, credible information. Moreover, what makes Direct Primary Care an even more remarkable feat is that it has made seeking medical advice instantaneous, easy, and convenient for patients.

Because COVID-19 is an unprecedented disease, minimal (and sometimes even contradicting) research is available online, so it is best to seek, more so heed, your Direct Primary Care physician's advice.

Thanks to the close-knit doctor-patient relationship nurtured by Direct Primary Care, physicians now have the opportunity to provide COVID patients with highly individualized medical advice, up-to-date progressions on the virus, as well as clarifications on otherwise damaging misinformation.

Moreover, what reinforces the positive relationship between Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 is that primary care is at the forefront of strengthening immune systems, keeping debilitating illnesses at bay, and making sure that patients are overall healthy and less susceptible to contract the virus.

With the presence of COVID-19, a Direct Primary Care subscription is now more valuable than ever to patients who have chronic conditions, such as diabetes, hypertension, or asthma. Direct Primary Care's grassroots approach to health care allows them to identify which patients are most vulnerable quickly.

By proactively reaching out to these types of patients, Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 efforts can prevent the spread of the virus from these vulnerable individuals. No other family care physicians can do this effectively the way Direct Primary Care physicians have.

DPC Covid Testing: Surveillance and Diagnosis with Direct Primary Care COVID Testing

Like many other out-patient services and lab procedures they offer, Direct Primary Care clinics now offer COVID testing to its members. This is especially important in a pandemic where social distancing is crucial to lessening transmission.

In the world of Direct Primary Care and COVID-19, you can avoid large crowds and be exposed in public for long periods by simply passing by your DPC clinic to get tested. Even better, many Direct Primary Care practices now offer a safer option in the form of home service testing.

What's great about Direct Primary Care is the end-to-end service it provides its patients. If your COVID test comes out positive, patients like you have the assurance that there is a physician on-call, ready to take care of you at your time of need.

DPC's Coronavirus Management: Pandemic Response and Treatment with Direct Primary Care

The silver lining in Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 is that patients can now appreciate better the benefits Direct Primary Care provides. There is much peace of mind that comes with knowing that your Direct Primary Care physician is well-equipped to diagnose, communicate, and actively respond to a COVID patient's needs.

While a small percentage of COVID patients require hospitalization, a broad spectrum of patients, i.e.,

  • Those who are suspected of having COVID-19,
  • Patients who tested positive with COVID-19, and
  • Even patients in contact with suspected or confirmed cases

Such cases are seen by primary care physicians first because most infected individuals, thankfully, only experience mild to moderate symptoms.

These mild to moderate COVID cases can successfully be treated at home in isolation. You or your loved ones are free to get in touch with your DPC physician via teleconsultation – you are welcome to call, text message or video chat them for anything you need. It is also not uncommon for your DPC physician to check up on you constantly and see how you are doing.

By successfully treating a large chunk of COVID cases at home, Direct Primary Care has played such a vital role in decongesting hospitals. Clinic-based care, home care, telemonitoring, and virtual consultations are the expertise of Direct Primary Care, which can help curb the virus.

Per a group of intensive care physicians in Italy, "We are learning that hospitals might be the main COVID-19 carriers, as they are rapidly populated by infected patients, facilitating transmission to uninfected patients. This disaster could be averted only by massive deployment of outreach services."

Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 efforts have helped steer the pandemic to a more positive, proactive, and efficient direction. Having DPC practices to rely on to triage, diagnose, and treat the virus is shown to reduce transmission and mortality – excellent news for both Direct Primary Care and COVID-19 in our books.

Authored by Harsha Moole, M.D., MBBS

Advocate of healthcare models that promote direct relationship between patients and doctors. Founder @ FindMyDirectDoctor, LLC.

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