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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: April 28, 2019 01:42 PM
From: Senator Patrick M. Browne
To: All Senate members
Subject: Direct Prinmary Care
In the near future, I plan to reintroduce Senate Bill 926, which will improve access to direct primary care by giving physicians and their patients an alternative to the traditional third party, fee-for-service system. Cosponsors last session included Senators Folmer, Hutchinson, DiSanto, Mensch, K. Ward and Stefano.

This legislation will provide for a direct primary care model, where patients receive access to their physician for a flat monthly fee. A full range of comprehensive primary care visits and services are included under this contract, ranging from acute and urgent care to regular checkups, labs, preventative care and chronic disease management. The legislation will recognize these arrangements, establish protections for both physicians and patients, and define it as outside the scope of state insurance regulation.

The direct primary care practices allow patients to establish a personal relationship with their doctor, diminishing the dependence on expensive surgeries, urgent care, emergency rooms and other preventable hospitalizations. Physicians are able to spend more time caring directly for their patients and significantly reduce operating expenses by cutting out the costs associated with billing a health insurance company.

In direct primary care, the fee-for-service model is replaced with a set monthly fee, with both the patient and the provider incentivized to seek the most appropriate treatment regime in the fewest visits, without dis-incentivizing the patient from seeking primary care throughout the year.

Twenty-five states have passed statutes that allow the direct primary care model. The legislation is intended to remove the barriers to entry for those providers who seek to provide these services to their patients. This model is an option for health care services by giving patients more control and choice in how they pay for the care they need.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this legislation.