Faced with skyrocketing health care costs, many county residents may put off seeing a doctor to save money, but a new practice located in Mount Airy wants to change that.
“We’re trying to do something unique here,” said Dr. Cathy Fanning, who opened Mayberry Medical Practice two weeks ago. “We’re trying to offer quality medical care at an affordable rate for everyone so every county resident can have access to a doctor.”
Fanning, a family practitioner, has teamed with Physician Care Direct to offer the service, which she said is less expensive because her practice isn’t encumbered by having to file insurance.
“We can do that because of a lack of overhead,” she said. “When a doctor deals with insurance, they have to buy very expensive computer equipment and software, and they have to employ multiple staff to handle the claims. We have the savings of all that and don’t have to do a lot of paperwork associated with filing insurance. That saves us multiple thousands of dollars right there.”
And she should know.
Fanning and her husband Billy Fanning moved to Mount Airy from their native Ohio recently when he received a job offer from Carolina Farm Credit.
“I think the impetus for starting this practice was simply from having 15-20 years of practicing medicine the other way,” she said. “I think that way of practicing medicine deteriorates what a doctor should be. This way allows us to be much more focused on the patient and their care, and less on the record-keeping and billing. We will be able to spend more time with a patient and won’t have to see so many patients every day.”
According to the doctor, there are two ways uninsured patients structure paying for their medical care.
For patients without insurance or with high-deductible plans, Mayberry Medical Practice offers what she called affordable, transparent pricing for most problems.
“We have a price of $59 for office visits, and most of our labs will be priced between $19 and $49,” she said, noting that patients will know how much their visit will cost before they arrive.
In addition, Fanning’s practice offers an option for continuing care.
“The other way a patient can receive care through us is with a Care Card for patients who want to see us regularly,” she said. “They can pay a single price for a year of $499, which can be broken down into installments for those who may not be able to come up with a full payment.”
Patients with a Care Card receive an annual physical, common laboratory tests and screenings and office visits that cost a $24 scheduling fee.
“Additional services and equipment not included in the plan are provided at affordable, transparent prices,” Fanning said.
She said options are also in place to work with employers who may be facing a budget crunch trying to provide medical insurance for their workers.
“It’s so much cheaper for employers than insurance,” she said.
Fanning said she decided to go another route with medical care for a simple reason.
“It’s a Christian, moral thing for us,” she said, looking at her husband. “We want to be a ministry in addition to a medical practice. We’ll pray with the patient if they feel like they need prayer.
“I want to be able to spend time with my patients,” Fanning said. “They deserve it.
“Instead of my patients spending 25 minutes in a waiting room and five minutes with a doctor, I want it the other way around. People are wanting, and they deserve, that kind of care again.”
Fanning can be reached at Mayberry Medical Practice at mayberry.physiciancaredirect.com or at 789-3621.
Reach Keith Strange at email@example.com or 719-1929.