When Dr. Linda Lee sees patients, she brings them from the waiting room, typically spends a half hour with them, cleans up the exam room and submits the insurance claims online. She's the one who returns phone voicemails, and she gives patients her cell phone number for urgent after-hours needs.
She has no nurse, no billing staff and no answering service. She only has a part-time secretary to digitally scan records that still arrive on paper at her paperless office.
The Rochester family physician's 5-year-old, low-overhead, solo practice is a stark contrast to the hurry-up, assembly-line format she found in large medical practices. "You basically had to see a patient every 10 minutes," said Lee. "How can you address the patient's medical problems in that short a time?"
What is unusual is that this article points out that there are 8 Ideal Medical Practices in this local area, which is frankly amazing considering how few IMPs there are in the entire US.
Other IMP clusters are located in Seattle, Portland (OR), Southern California, Albuquerque, Albany, St. Louis and New York City.
For a list of IMPs around the country, go to www.impmap.com. Don't forget to use the zoom in/out controls to take a closer look.