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Direct primary care—in which practices bill patients recurring fees (often monthly) that cover many services without additional charges—is faltering, with the closure of two pioneers of the model recently. Qliance Medical Management and Turntable Health have both decided to close up shop, citing difficulties in securing funding to update services (eg, by offering a more urgent care-like level of care) and invest in technologies that would facilitate virtual care. Nonetheless, direct primary care continues to be a tempting proposition for many clinicians. Those who are drawn to it say it allows them practice medicine the way they think it should be practiced, without dealing with insurance companies or Medicaid/Medicare regulations. Patients like it because it helps them budget their healthcare costs, but apparently there have not been enough of them to help keep some of the providers afloat.

It’s Been a Tough Spring for Direct Primary Care