Healthcare Is Not Working For Most People

Insurance is meant to help in times of unexpected high-cost care. For the most common, less expensive things in healthcare – like primary care – health insurance hinders more than it helps. Insurance prevents us from building strong relationships with our primary care physicians. And with copays, deductibles, and confusing billing, healthcare has become aggravating and overly expensive.

The membership-based model we use at Mint Lone Tree removes the constraints of insurance and third party payers from routine healthcare, allowing our physicians to create close, personal relationships with our members.

Using Car Insurance For Routine Maintenance?

Imagine if we had to use our car insurance every time we got gas, had the oil changed, or had the tires replaced. We’d have a mess on our hands.

  • Costs would skyrocket
  • Gas stations and repair shops would need to hire an army of staff to process the billing
  • We would have no idea what the actual prices are until weeks or months after service
  • Your insurer would restrict you to certain gas stations and repair shops
  • You would face huge waits just for routine issues
  • And the list goes on…

This just wouldn’t make sense, but that’s effectively how our current healthcare system works.

The Status Quo

Until the early-20th century, Americans paid their healthcare providers directly for care. Physicians used to routinely make house calls, and had time to develop personal relationships with their patients.

Eventually, health insurance outpaced cash payments as the primary revenue source for medical clinics and hospitals. This change helped lead to the cumbersome fee-for-service healthcare model we see in traditional clinics today.

There are many barriers to receiving optimal care in the fee-for-service model. Physicians are paid based on how many patients they see, how many tests they order, what and how many procedures they do, and so on. Contracting with insurers has placed more demands on physicians, who currently spend more time dealing with insurance and paperwork than with patients. In fact, the face-to-face time a physician spends with a patient is currently less than 12 minutes.

Most physicians would love to spend more time developing personal relationships with their patients, and many would love to integrate non-traditional components of healing, such as acupuncture or yoga therapy, into their treatment plans. Unfortunately, in the traditional model, they are simply unable to because of the restrictions and bureaucracy associated with insurance.

Physicians In Traditional Practices*

83% can’t spend as much time with patients as they’d like

95% wish they could do more to help patients stay well/prevent health problems

85% wish they could spend more time with their patients to truly get to know them as people

54% write prescriptions or refer patients to specialists due to time constraints

* Source: 2017 Ipsos poll

Optimal Health and Well-being

Direct Primary Care (DPC) helps remove many barriers associated with the traditional fee-for-service model that is governed by insurance. You will receive more than just great healthcare. You will receive tools that can help you in your search for optimal health and well-being.

Better Access, Lower Costs

Instead of using insurance, you pay a monthly, quarterly, or annual membership fee. Your membership enables you to visit your physician as often as needed without incurring additional costs, contact your physician directly by phone, video chat, or text, make same or next day appointments in most cases, and more. Additionally, there are never any surprise charges or hidden fees, so you will always know exactly what you’re paying for everything.

The elimination of insurance from this relationship not only benefits you the member, but also your physician. Your physician can spend the time needed to develop a trusted, personalized relationship with you, and create an ongoing care plan intended to keep you healthy and strive for optimal wellness.

And your healthcare is personalized for you. This means we put you first. We treat you how we want to be treated. We call you by your name.

The improved access and increased time you get in DPC has been proven to result in:

  • Fewer visits to the emergency room

  • Fewer visits to urgent care

  • Fewer hospital admissions

  • Fewer specialist referrals

  • Less spending on total healthcare costs

60% of adults have at least one chronic condition – the majority of which are modifiable or reversible.

The Centers for Disease Control

Fewer Patients

In a typical family or general medicine practice, a physician has an average of 2,700 patients overall, and typically sees 18-20 patients per day. Some physicians see many more patients per day, mainly because of the requirements insurance companies place on them regarding how many patients they need to see. This leads to long waits in crowded waiting rooms, and short visits with your physician.

At Mint Lone Tree, your physician sees an average of 8-10 patients per day, and we intentionally keep the number of patients we see to about 1/4 to 1/3 the overall number of patients that a physician sees in a typical practice.

More Time With You

The average face-to-face time with a physician in a standard medical visit in the U.S. is less than 12 minutes. That may be why you feel rushed or nervous, or forgot to ask questions during your appointment.

At Mint Lone Tree, our appointments typically last 30-60 minutes. No rush. This means there’s more time for you to spend with your physician and develop a close relationship…and to remember those questions you wanted to ask.


In our current fee-for-service medical system, choice is very limited. This means that when a physician refers you to a specialist, the referral is often to someone in your insurance network, and this may not be who you would choose.

We have no ties to insurance networks, which means you can see the specialist of your choice.

Better Well-Being

Our Lead Physician, Dr. Amy Merritt, believes in the importance of the mind/body/spirit connection and that the healing of each component is paramount to an individual’s health and well-being. Additionally, she believes better overall health and well-being can be achieved when many modalities of healing are considered.

These beliefs form the basis of our healthcare + wellness philosophy. At Mine Lone Tree, you have the opportunity to explore multiple treatment, healing, and maintenance options with your physician.