Private Sector Solutions to a Public Health Care Problem

Guest Correspondence

Health care continues to be a concern that affects everyone. We watched the federal government this past month stumble when it came to fixing a system described by both Democrats and Republicans as flawed. Everyone agrees that we have problems to fix, but there was little discussion on solutions. There was a lot of infighting and finger-pointing. It was tough to watch; there is so much at stake for all of us.

The Argus Foundation has a mission statement that includes education on issues affecting our community. We have a speaker series called Meet the Minds that helps us meet the education objective of our mission statement. While we wait for government to act, The Argus Foundation wants to empower our community with options.

On Friday May 5, The Argus Foundation has invited Dr. Lee Gross to talk to us about a health care alternative outside of the Affordable Care Act. This approach is a patient-centered approach that cuts out insurance as a middle man for standard health care. This system of care is called “Direct Primary Care.” Patients travel hundreds of miles to take advantage of this system. It is being used by those who simply can’t afford health care today. It is also being used by those who want an option outside of being dependent on insurance, as well as the costs and lack of choices associated with it.

Last year, I went to a policy conference in Orlando. While I was there, I had the honor at sitting next to Dr. Lee Gross. We chatted and I learned what I could about this system over a short lunch. To my surprise, Dr. Gross has his practice right here in Sarasota County. He practices in North Port while also traveling the country spreading the word about Direct Primary Care. I met him just before he was about to fly out to meet with Dr. Ben Carson to talk about this issue.

This alternative health care system is being noticed on the state level throughout the country. A little over two weeks ago, The Florida House of Representatives passed a bill that supports Direct Primary Care. The vote was 107-6, a vote that crossed the political aisle. The sponsor of the bill, Representative Danny Burgess, claims that the bill will promote Direct Primary Care. He describes Direct Primary Care on his Facebook page as an “affordable, innovative new approach to quality health care for Florida's families.”

We invite you to come learn with us about this alternative from one of Sarasota County’s own practitioners. Solutions to government problems are many times generated from the private sector, where innovation is at its best. Come learn from a doctor who is on the cutting edge of an alternative in the medical practice that could change the way we look at health care, while cutting out insurance and government at the same time.

Christine Robinson is executive director of The Argus Foundation.

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