Getting healthy during this COVID-19 time has become a priority for many people since COVID-19 is potentially dangerous almost exclusively in people with one or more diseases. Problem – desiring to get healthy and actually becoming healthy are two different things. Enter solution – group visits by healthcare provider. At Oasis Family Medicine in Montrose, we have implemented healthcare visits using this group model as a way to provide useful health education within a supportive environment.
Typically, a person sees his or her doctor, is given a diagnosis, and what little counselling the provider can give is all done in an average of a 7-15 minute office visit. Then the person is left on their own to figure out how to take care of and how to adapt to whatever challenges the diagnosis presents. Have you ever experienced this? From years of experience as a physician, for primary care, this traditional healthcare reality yields unrealistic efforts to affect lasting meaningful health changes for clients.
So far, in 2020, group visits have been a phenomenal success at Oasis Family Medicine. The atmosphere helps people feel less alone and more supported since they get a total of around 90 minutes. Ideally 10-15 clients spend this time with one or even two providers presenting holistic medical/healthcare teachings that allow questions to be asked and solutions shared both during and after the presentation. While clients will often ask questions of the provider(s), the secret sauce is the supportive community environment created by the group. Clients learn from each other and support each other. Participants (providers included) really get the sense of “we are in this together”.
The groups may include people with various diagnoses as ultimately most diagnoses come down to key underlying lifestyle principles. While knowledge about how to address these lifestyle interventions is certainly important, the group community support is like a rocket booster that catapults clients into achieving the successful implementation of the lifestyle principles that ultimately translates into meaningful long term health improvements.
So, whether you are trying to get healthy in preparation for what is likely an inevitable coronavirus exposure (let’s face it, even the most careful folks will likely get exposed at some point in time, whether it be this month or next year) or whether you just want to get healthy in general for any other reason, consider joining a group visit healthcare model like currently exists at Oasis Family Medicine or another similar office.
While this might seem like a shameless self-promoting revenue-producing plug we have made these group visits prices based on income so that price should not be a barrier. These visits are therefore extremely affordable and truly cost just enough to cover our costs. This is Oasis Family Medicine’s way of giving back to our amazing community.