Plum Health DPC (Direct Primary Care) is a family practice doctor’s office in Detroit’s Corktown neighborhood, occupying a storefront space in the new development at the former Tiger Stadium. Dr. Paul Thomas, MD, and Dr. Raquel Orlich, DO, are the two doctors here, while Dr. Jamie Qualls, DO, MPH, operates out of a new office in Farmington Hills. Paul has written two books, one explaining the emergent phenomenon of Direct Primary Care, and one explaining the practice for doctors from a startup and entrepreneurial standpoint.
Tour the space here:
Plum Health started a few blocks away in the Detroit School of Digital Technology, a former police precinct, on West Vernor Highway. DPC is a healthcare model that emphasizes individual access. Patients pay a subscription fee per month, the “direct” part of the DPC– almost like “medicine-as-a-service.” Patients can text, call, or e-mail their doctor directly, rather than having to schedule weeks-out appointments through the increasingly byzantine and faceless processes of corporate medicine. In comparison, one might pay five times more per month for a high-deductible health insurance plan, but might have to nonetheless wait weeks to schedule an appointment with a doctor who doesn’t have the time to get to know you as a patient. DPC also provides affordable access to a range of common medications, affordable lab testing, vaccinations, and more.
As GoodRX notes: “[DPC] physicians are able to avoid the time normally spent preparing and filing insurance paperwork. This allows for in-depth visits and consultations with their patients. Direct primary care practices also typically have fewer patients than those accepting insurance.”
The practice has been well-reviewed on Google (5.0 stars out of 72 reviews) and Yelp (5.0 stars out of 5 reviews). See JC Reindl’s write-up in the Free Press, coverage from MJ Galbraith in Model D Media, and this article from TheHUB.