As Donald Trump begins to transition into his presidency, the healthcare community has begun to make predictions about the impact of Trump’s policies on independent physicians. But what can direct primary care providers expect to see the next four years?
Though a health care agenda has yet to be clearly outlined by Trump’s team, one of the tenets of health policy for both Republican law makers and Trump revolves around Health Savings Accounts (HSA's). Designed by the U.S. government, HSA's help you play a more informed and active role in controlling your health care costs. HSA's are medical savings accounts that allow taxpayers with high-deductible plans to use tax-free funds to pay for qualified medical expenses. You or your employer put pre-tax dollars into an investment account that grows your money tax-free, then you spend that money on qualified health care costs without paying tax on it.
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Currently, concierge practices that see patients enrolled in HSA's or Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA's) through an employer, can use their tax-exempt HSA or FSA funds to pay for their concierge physician’s annual fees. Annual fees charged by concierge practices include many medical services, including annual physicals. Unlike concierge physicians, physicians practicing within a direct primary care model currently cannot be reimbursed by HSA or FSA funds.
But with Republicans holding more power come January 20, it’s likely that HSA's could be expanded to include direct primary care monthly fee arrangements. Legislation could be introduced in Congress that would allow HSA's to work in conjunction with direct primary care practices.
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If this happens, direct primary care physicians would benefit. With the current shortage of primary care physicians in the U.S., an expansion of HSA's into the direct primary care territory could incentivize more patients to seek care from direct primary care practitioners and also encourage more physicians to open up direct primary care practices across the country.
Primary care certainly needs a change and with a Trump presidency, primary care physicians are hopeful for the future.
With 24/7 access to your personal physician, unlimited appointment scheduling and guarenteed longer appointments, direct primary care is growing throughout the country. Total Access Medical is offering you the opportunity to meet for free with a licensed physician. Find out today if direct primary care is right for you!