Tag: Ypsilanti

Coronavirus Vaccine

admin

17 December 2020

Hi, thank you for coming back for the latest edition of Beyond Primary Cares blog; Coronavirus Vaccine. In Beyond Primary Care blogs I highlight healthy and fun recipes, healthcare news, advice for medical conditions, as well as how membership for care works! Dr. Jeff O’Boyle is the owner of Beyond Primary Care, which is an insurance free, membership based family medicine and addiction medicine clinic. Beyond Primary Care is the only Direct Care clinic serving patients in Ann Arbor and throughout Washtenaw, Livingston, and Wayne County giving families and employers peace of mind with healthcare costs by providing affordable, accessible, and authentic primary care services.

The primary purpose of the blog is to introduce healthy lifestyle concepts and answer common questions I receive from patients that I believe are important. I want to start discussions that will help educate, benefit, and improve your well-being. 

In this blog post, I wanted to update my patients and any prospective patients on the…

Coronavirus Vaccine

I have been receiving many questions about the COVID-19 vaccine, how it will be distributed and how to get it. The first shipments of the Pfizer vaccine will be going to hospitals and centers able to facilitate the challenging -100 degree storage requirements of this vaccine.

A few weeks back I called all x5 of my medical suppliers and not one had any knowledge of Covid-vaccines being able to purchase for individual clinics. The State of Michigan and NOT individual medical practices will be distributing and determining prioritization for vaccine administration.
Further, the State of Michigan has a multiple stage distribution plan prioritizing nursing home residents (who make up a sizable portion of the Covid mortality) and frontline healthcare workers (EMS, ER and ICU nurses and doctors, etc.). If you are one of these, please discuss with your hospital employer or place of residence how they plan to distribute/administer the vaccine

Stages of Coronavirus Vaccine Distribution

Once the State of Michigan moves beyond the first stages, CVS and Walmart have agreed to participate in the administration of the vaccine to the remainder of the population starting with high-risk people. It is hard to say with certainty when this will occur as it will be dependent on the speed with which the vaccine can be manufactured and distributed. It will likely be several weeks to several months before we reach that point.

Once clarity is provided as to how to get the vaccine and the process needed, I will share that with all of you so that those who want the vaccine and for whom the vaccine is appropriate can get it. 

Please be aware that I- nor any other doctor- does not have control or influence over this process. It is being determined at a State and Federal level. But, I will do our best to assist all of you in navigating this process as it starts to unfold.

Please see the specific State of Michigan vaccine distribution plan here.

Reasons to NOT get the Covid vaccine?

Truthfully the only individuals who should not get the Covid shot are children less than 16 years of age or people who experience a severe (life threatening) allergy to with other vaccines.

People with a cough or cold can still get the Covid shot. 

Covid shots given may cause injection site soreness and pain, redness, swelling, fever, malaise and muscle aches- all of which are usually mild and go away on their own.

Thank you for reading.

  • Dr. Jeff O’Boyle with Beyond Primary Care

Fish Antibiotics For Humans

admin

26 January 2020

Hi, thank you for coming back for the latest edition of Beyond Primary Cares blog; where I highlight healthy and fun recipes, healthcare news, advice for medical conditions, as well as how membership for care works! Dr. Jeff O’Boyle is the owner of Beyond Primary Care, which is a new approach to family medicine and addiction medicine that creates the time and space your healthcare deserves. Beyond Primary Care is the only Direct Care clinic serving patients in Ann Arbor and throughout Washtenaw, Livingston, and Wayne County giving families and employers peace of mind with healthcare costs by providing affordable, accessible, and authentic primary care services.

The primary purpose of the blog is to introduce healthy lifestyle concepts and answer common questions I receive from patients that I believe are important. I want to start discussions that will help educate, benefit, and improve your well-being. 

In this blog post, I wanted to talk about an actual patient of mine about to fish antibiotics for humans, the barriers of obtaining affordable medications, and how to obtain affordable medications.

My Patient’s Fish Antibiotic Story

A kind man in his 30s finds out about my clinic last month saying ‘direct primary care’ is perfect fit because even though he works full time, his employer does not offer him health insurance. He explains his employer is a contractor for a major shipping company (think top 3), but since they are contractors, they are not entitled to the same benefits.

He has been without any healthcare for the past 3 years saying “I can’t afford BlueCross.”

The newly enrolled patient says discovering Beyond Primary Care was serendipitous, because he has been experiencing left ear pain so bad for the past 2 weeks, that he was going to do something about if finally. Curious, I ask what he plan was and he replied he had been reading about ‘fish antibiotics for humans’ on the internet.

Since you don’t need a prescription for that he could avoid the healthcare costs associated with establishing care with a new physician and price of medications at a retail pharmacy.

A Dangerous Idea

Yes, so taking fish antibiotics for humans is a real thing. A quick google search turned up numerous unscientific medical survival guides. I read the reviews for aquarium antibiotics. However, taking medications that are 1) not for humans, 2) not prescribed by a licensed physician and 3) not properly dosed is incredibly dangerous. 

Misuse of any medication can cause serious illness. The medications used for many animals and vertebrates do NOT require FDA approval, so there is no regulation over the manufacturing of the medication that one would take.

I always tell my patients for any medication that they have effects, thus they may have side effects. Additionally, using antibiotics for self-diagnosed illnesses may lead to antibiotic resistance, which ultimately hurts the individual using the medication and society in the larger picture. 

Improving Affordable Healthcare and Transparency

Antibiotics are not necessarily all expensive either. Some large retail pharmacies in the state of Michigan even offer certain types of antibiotics for free (you still need a prescription from a physician). The patient did have an ear infection. Because we are a ‘Direct Primary Care’ clinic, the patient was prescribed AND dispensed the antibiotic from our office at the time of the visit.

The cost of the drug prescribed to this particular patient through Beyond Primary Care was $1.95.

Many of us are accustomed to thinking that we pay health insurance premiums to get access to a lower cost for health care medications — that being the “negotiated rate” or “contracted rate” that the insurance company and the payer agree to in contract talks. But increasingly we are hearing that insured people are paying more than uninsured people.

Additionally, evil organizations out there called Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMS- more on them on a later post) are yet another middlemen in our insane medical billing industry that can increase the prices we pay for medications.

No Quick Legislative Road

In late 2019, the current white house administration released new rules requiring hospitals to be more proactive with price transparency by publishing their charges and negotiated rates. Great right? If we go on Amazon, we can see the description, reviews, and price for everything. We expect and demand price transparency with all our other transactions. Same for healthcare now.

However, even within a few weeks of this executive order, hospital systems and insurer across the nation are suing to keep their prices a secret. The hospital systems and insurers know that if their costs become public knowledge, they stand to lose millions of dollars because people will simply shop around for the best market price, something we do for every other service.

Is there an easy solution?

In my opinion, the best advocates for patients to obtain affordable and transparent healthcare are those independent from a large hospital/health system– such as those who operate as Direct Primary Care (DPC) physicians.