By Sarah Kirby Transcript Staff Writer | Posted: Sunday, September 27, 2015 7:15 am
Dr. Shane Stidham opened Complete Healthcare of Oklahoma, 3650 W. Rock Creek Road in Norman, in July. The business offers discounted health care.
But what he lacked in business savvy, the Norman anesthesiologist and pain management doctor made up for in bedside manner. Through conversations with his patients, he felt more compelled to help them afford the health care they needed.
“I was seeing a lot of patients in my pain management practice and just hearing a lot of complaints that they have insurance but that they’re paying a large amount per month for premiums, and when they come in and see their doctor, they have a huge deductible — a five, six, seven thousand dollar deductible. That doesn’t give them any benefit.
“Every time (patients) go see a doctor, they’re paying money. They’re always paying a co-payment and trying to meet that deductible. Some people avoid paying for insurance; they just don’t have enough money,” Stidham said.
He decided to offer quality health care directly, opening Complete Healthcare of Oklahoma, 3650 W. Rock Creek Road in Norman, in July.
Complete Healthcare of Oklahoma gives patients direct physician access at a cost far below traditional insurance. Individual members pay $129 a month for two office visits: one with a primary care physician and an orthopedic physician.
“They can use that at any time for any reason,” Stidham said. “When they come in, there’s no extra charges. You won’t have any co-payments or deductibles, no extra expenses.”
Whereas concierge medicine is a relationship between a patient and a primary care physician in which the patient pays an annual fee or retainer, Stidham said his service involves two kinds of physicians.
Primary/family physicians include Kelley Lobb, MD, and Stephen Connery, MD; orthopedic physicians include James Bond, MD, and Richard Kirkpatrick, MD. Members and their families also have direct contract with pediatricians, depending on their particular needs.
“A lot of people think of it as an expensive thing, where a patient will pay a lot of money to have access to a physician. This is more like a direct contract. It goes back to how old-school medicine was, before insurance. You basically have a relationship with a physician and work out a payment with them. This avoids insurance and all third-party payment.”
Most common illnesses and other problems can be solved for patients with one visit, Stidham said.
“They love it because they don’t have to worry about getting sick,” Stidham said. “They come right in and they don’t have to worry about coming up with a co-payment. It’s kind of nice.”
Stidham did all of the ground work, setting up a marketing strategy with Full 360 Marketing in Norman and setting contracts with physicians, with the help of attorney Armando Rosell.
“As we expand, we’ll have more permanent staff,” Stidham said.
Stidham partnered with Thunder Discount Pharmacy, 2296 W. Main St., which accepts all cash payment for medication.
“He has a very nice, cheap list of medications, so we refer our patients over there for medications,” Stidham said.
Many patients have expressed gratitude upon registering with Complete Healthcare of Oklahoma.
“I always thought if I could help a few patients afford and have access to health care, it would be a great thing. So far, it’s been helping people,” Stidham said. “That’s what we wanted.”
For more information about Complete Healthcare of Oklahoma, visit completehealthcareok.com.
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