3 Ways SB 101 Could Change Montana Healthcare
When signed, SB 101 will be the nation's most expansive authorization of DPC to date, making Montana a leader in affordable healthcare options.
“Direct primary care is about as close to a free market in health care as you’ve ever seen in our country.” – Dr. Lee Gross
This week, we celebrated as the Senate officially sent SB 101 to the Governor’s desk. This bill draws from our recommendations to permanently authorize Direct Patient Care (DPC) in Montana. When signed, SB 101 will be the nation’s most expansive authorization of DPC to date, making Montana a leader in affordable healthcare options.
DPC, if you’re not familiar already, is an innovative health care model where patients bypass insurance entirely to pay doctors, in the form of a membership, in exchange for unlimited access to primary care services for as little as $70 per month.
Let’s review 3 ways this could change healthcare in Montana:
- More Healthcare Access
At the end of the day, you don’t have access to healthcare if paying for it will bankrupt you. As premiums and deductibles rise to thousands of dollars, even people with insurance coverage are priced out of the healthcare they need.
By allowing doctors the maximum freedom to innovate with affordable options outside of the standard insurance system, SB 101 could transform access to healthcare especially for Montanans who are uninsured or have high deductible plans.
- Better Health Outcomes
SB 101 will allow DPC arrangements that promote stronger patient/doctor relationships to flourish, which has been shown to prevent expensive conditions and save costs over the long run.
- Lower the Cost of Healthcare
By eliminating the middlemen and bureaucracy involved in billing insurance, patients in direct care save on overall healthcare costs. SB 101 puts safeguards in law for innovative DPC arrangements to continue to radically reduce costs not just for patients, but for employer-sponsored health insurance as well.
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- Earlier this week, the Montana House started floor debates on HB 2, the main budget bill.
Montana leaders owe it to taxpayers to debate the necessity for every dime of state spending and should eliminate waste whenever possible.
If the Legislature can at least agree to place firm limits on spending growth, they can keep the budget within the bounds of what taxpayers can afford and take a substantial step toward enabling permanent tax relief.
Check out our full statement and budget policy breakdown HERE.
- Ever wonder why Healthcare is so expensive? Check out this explainer from the Texas Public Policy Foundation.
Imagine going to a restaurant and not knowing what the food costs until after you’ve eaten. That’s what our current healthcare system is like.
By putting price information upfront and cutting out the middlemen, costs will come down and people will get the healthcare they need.
Allow the Doctors to Dispense
- This week, we testified in favor of SB 374, a proposal which draws from our recommendations for lawmakers to allow medical providers to dispense the medicine they provide.
Montana is one of only five states that prohibits doctors from dispensing the medicine they prescribe in most instances. By allowing doctors to dispense medicine, lawmakers will reduce barriers for patients to get the treatment they need by giving Montanans more safe, convenient options to get their prescriptions.