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Why Personalized Concierge Medicine Is the Future of Health

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Concierge medicine used to be something reserved for celebrities and the ultra rich, and it didn’t seem accessible to us mere mortals. The concept is great — having a doctor who you know and trust and who is always available when you need him/her.

I’ve loved the idea of it for years, and was so excited when I finally found an affordable and personalized option that made this available to everyone. In fact, when combined with healthcare sharing, our family has found that we save money and receive drastically better care than more traditional models.

What Is Concierge Medicine?

In short, concierge medicine is an arrangement between a patient and a doctor where a patient pays a set amount each month (retainer). This usually entitles the patient to better access to the doctor and better care. This arrangement can also be called direct care, boutique medicine, or membership medicine.

The idea has become more popular recently through shows like Royal Pains, and through growing publicity about such arrangements with celebrities and their doctors. Essentially, this type of arrangement can apply to any type of doctor/patient relationship where the patient pays a regular retainer, though sometimes other fees are involved too. These arrangements can be local with primary care doctors, or increasingly, online to allow access to specialists and more personalized care.

Personally, our family uses a customized platform called SteadyMD that allows us to have direct access to our primary care doctor who shares our values and understands our medical needs. Here’s how we use it and why we love it…

Benefits of  Concierge Medicine

This new model seems to be growing in response to the ever-expanding problems in healthcare that affect the patient and the doctor. Unconventional arrangements like these can often create a better system for both the doctor and the patient. Here are some of the benefits of concierge medicine:

Personalized Care

Having experienced concierge medicine first hand, I can vouch for the benefits to the patients!

Here’s the thing… When I set out to find my own health answers, I eventually found just that. My own health answers. The more I learn, the more I realize that there truly is no one-size-fits-all. Not even close! Short of some things that seem universally true, like the dangers of heavy metals and plastic exposure, there really is no perfect diet or lifestyle that applies to everyone, as we’re all so different.

Yet chronic disease is on the rise and we all need more specific and personalized answers. This is where personalized medicine like concierge really shines. By reducing the patient load and establishing a more intimate relationship between doctor and patient, it allows the doctor to dive deeper and look for root causes and establish lifestyle interventions for the patient.

Also, instead of an urgent care physician or teledoc who sees dozens of patients a day, a direct care relationship like this allows the doctor to be familiar with the patient’s health history and is able to address problems more quickly and thoroughly.

More Time and Less Stress for the Doctors

Just like patients, many doctors are suffering and stressed due to the current medical model of patient overload, and the situation seems to be getting worse. Just a few decades ago 70% of doctors practiced primary care. That number is now 30% and shrinking as many doctors opt to specialize right out of medical school.

On top of that, most doctors are having to see more and more patients to meet basic rent and to cover the rising cost of insurance.

I’ve always had a lot of respect for doctors and really believe that they often come from a desire to help others. It would be tough to make it through that many years of school if they didn’t! I have also talked to many doctors who are frustrated by the limitations of the regular medical model and more and more are turning to concierge medicine instead.

As an example, I now have a primary care doctor through Steady MD, an online/app concierge medicine system that connects patients with doctors who share their values and can address their specific needs. My doc has less than one third of the patients most doctors have, which allows him to know my medical history and have time to dive deep when I have an issue.

He is available via their mobile app, e-mail, text, or phone when I need him and since his hours are more flexible and his patient load is lighter, he is quick to respond and always super helpful. He loves what he does and I love that I can always reach him when I need to!

More Affordable Care

Years ago, we were paying over $1,000 a month for a high deductible plan that was almost useless when we needed it. I couldn’t access the doctors and specialists I needed because they were out of network and the out-of-pocket expense was so high. I felt helpless and stuck.

Now, our family uses a combination of healthcare sharing and concierge medicine through SteadyMD. We save so much money while getting the best care we’ve ever received.

Here’s what I mean:

The total we pay for both of these is hundreds of dollars less than what we paid for traditional insurance. Usually there are no other out of pocket expenses. Our inexpensive monthly retainer for SteadyMD lets us access our doc anytime we need to with no co-pay or extra charge. Whenever there is a medical issue or need, our doctor helps us navigate it, and healthcare sharing reimburses the cost.

I’ve saved countless dollars by being able to text or video chat my doc a picture of one of my kids to see if they needed stitches or medication and not had to go to urgent care or the ER. When I’ve been traveling in other states or countries and needed something, my doc was able to help.

How to Find Direct Care Concierge Medicine

This was the tricky part for me initially. I was familiar with the model for a long time before I found a way to make it affordable and efficient.

A growing number of doctors are offering this model on a local level, though I could never find these options where we lived and these doctors don’t seem to always understand issues like MTHFR, genetic problems, and autoimmune disease.

I turned to a digital platform that solved both of these issues! The digital aspect allows the doctors to be licensed and work with people in multiple states and without the need for physical office buildings, and costs are lower. Additionally, I could select a doctor who understood my condition (in fact, he has Hashimoto’s too!) and who shares my values. He isn’t quick to recommend antibiotics if they aren’t needed, and he understands nutrition.

Ask Questions

With any concierge or direct care model, it is important to ask questions first. Make sure that the doctor you work with understands your needs and any specific conditions or concerns you have. Ask how the model works, what the fees and costs are, and what specifically you receive in return.

Read the Fine Print

Just as with any big decision in life, make sure to read the fine print carefully. Make sure to understand all costs associated and read carefully to see if there are extra fees for visits or any other hidden charges.

What I Chose and Why

As I said, this was something I thought was out of reach for a long time. Then, a friend introduced me to the idea of digital concierge medicine and I was intrigued. This model basically combines the best of technology and the best of personalized care.

The digital aspect makes it affordable…$169/month for a family plan two parents and all kids. This also allows the doctors to take fewer patients so they have more time and attention for each patient.

Essentially, it feels like the modern equivalent of a country medicine doctor who comes to your house when you have a medical need. Except it makes the best use of technology so we get instant access instead via text, email or even video chat.

This model has been a great option for our family, and I’m so glad that SteadyMD is helping make this type of personalized and customized medicine available to everyone. I also know I had a lot of questions before I considered signing up. I wanted to know what the process looked like and how it worked. I’m sharing my experience here in case you have similar questions.

How SteadyMD Works

  1. They partner you with a doctor who understands your medical conditions, needs and concerns. I was partnered with a doctor who also has Hashimotos.
  2. During your first (video chat or phone) appointment, your doc goes deep on your personal and family medical history. He or she listens to your questions, asks about nutrition and lifestyle and can even retrieve medical records from other doctors and hospitals if needed. I talked to my doctor for an hour and he was very familiar with genetics, autoimmune disease and answered all the questions I had.
  3. Then, you have access to your doc anytime. You can text, call or video chat anytime from any device. I usually use my phone and just text or chat within the app. This has been especially helpful when kids got minor illnesses or injuries and I wanted advice on if they needed more care.
  4. When you need it, the doctor is there to help. They can prescribe medications, order labs, and even work with other specialists when needed (at no extra cost). Also, since these physicians have more bandwidth and are less stressed, they have time to talk about lifestyle and preventative care too.
  5. The app can even integrate with health and fitness apps (if you choose to do that) and let your doc have access to your diet and exercise data and full health history.

TIP: I’ve found that having a digital otoscope is really helpful if you’re including your kids in the membership. this lets you send high res images of the ear drum to a doc if needed so they can evaluate remotely.

Final Thoughts…

I’m so glad I made the switch to this type of medical care, especially when I combined it with Samaritan Ministries. This model may not be for everyone, but it is perfect for those of us with specific conditions, questions, or lifestyle preferences, and for those of us who like to be actively involved in our own health care decisions.

Local options are available in some places, but the digital platform through SteadyMD has been the best of both worlds for me. In a world where we can order our groceries and anything we need through an app, and pay bills online anytime, I love that I now can access my doctor in the same way and not have to drive anywhere or sit and wait for hours in a doctors office to then only get 5 minutes of actual face time with him.

I was so excited about making concierge medicine available to everyone, that I even decided to personally invest in the company and work with them to make their system even better for moms and families (you can check out my podcast episode all about that here). I’ve been so impressed with their doctors, that I asked their Chief Medical Advisor, Dr. Scott Sorries, to head up the new medical review team here at Wellness Mama. He’s helping make sure all of the posts you read here are accurate and informative.

If you’ve been looking for a truly personalized and attentive care option, I highly recommend Steady MD!

Ever heard of this type of medicine? Ever used it? Share below!

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Bill Gates: Third Shot May Be Needed to Combat Coronavirus Variants

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With more than 40 million Americans having received at least the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, a third dose may be needed to prevent the spread of new variants of the disease, Bill Gates told CBS News Tuesday.

Gates’ comments come amid growing concern that the current vaccines are not effective against the more contagious Brazilian and South African variants.

Pfizer and Moderna have stated that their vaccines are 95% and 99% effective, respectively, against the initial strain of COVID. However, some scientists have questioned those statements. Additionally, the World Health Organization and vaccine companies have conceded that the vaccines do not prevent people from being infected with COVID or from transmitting it, but are only effective at reducing symptoms.

Gates told CBS Evening News:

“The discussion now is do we just need to get a super high coverage of the current vaccine, or do we need a third dose that’s just the same, or do we need a modified vaccine?”

U.S. vaccine companies are looking at making modifications, which Gates refers to as “tuning.”

People who have had two shots may need to get a third shot and people who have not yet been vaccinated would need the modified vaccine, explained Gates. When asked whether the coronavirus vaccine would be similar to the flu vaccine, which requires yearly boosters, Gates couldn’t rule that out. Until the virus is eradicated from all humans, Gates said, additional shots may be needed in the future.

AstraZeneca in particular has a challenge with the variant,” Gates explained. “And the other two, Johnson & Johnson and Novavax, are slightly less effective, but still effective enough that we absolutely should get them out as fast as we can while we study this idea of tuning the vaccine.”

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is funding the studies being conducted in Brazil and South Africa, CBS News said. The foundation has also invested in the AstraZeneca, Johnson & Johnson and the Novavax vaccines, which are being tested against new variants. Once the AstraZeneca vaccine is approved, the Global Alliance for Vaccine Initiative or GAVI, founded by Gates, will distribute it globally.

“Gates continues to move the goalposts,” said Robert F. Kennedy, Jr., chairman and chief legal counsel of Children’s Health Defense. “Meanwhile the strategies he and others have promoted are obliterating the global economy, demolishing the middle class, making the rich richer and censoring vaccine safety advocates, like me.”

Kennedy said that the exclusive focus on vaccines has prevented the kind of progress required to actually address and recover from the pandemic:

“From the pandemic’s outset, clear-headed people familiar with the challenges inherent in the vaccine model have understood that the path out of crisis would require multiple steps. Those steps would need to include the development and/or identification of therapeutic drugs, the sharing of information among doctors to hone improved treatment models that reduce infection mortality rates below those for flu, and the kind of broad-spectrum long-term herd immunity that protects against mutant strains and that only derives from natural infection.”

Instead, Gates and vaccine makers are proposing a lifetime of boosters, supporting insufficient testing to determine safety and failing to address the inadequate monitoring of vaccine injuries, Kennedy said.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of Children’s Health Defense.

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Young nurse suffers from hemorrhage and brain swelling after second dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine

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(Natural News) A 28-year-old healthcare worker from the Swedish American Hospital, in Beloit, Wisconsin was recently admitted to the ICU just five days after receiving a second dose of Pfizer’s experimental mRNA vaccine. The previously healthy young woman was pronounced brain dead after cerebral angiography confirmed a severe hemorrhage stroke in her brain stem.

Her family members confirmed that she was “breaking out in rashes” after the vaccine. She also suffered from sudden migraine headaches, and got “sick” after taking the second dose of the vaccine. At the very end, she lost the ability to speak and went unconscious. The migraines, nausea, and loss of speech were all symptoms of a brain bleed and brain swelling, something her family did not understand at the time, and something nobody would expect after vaccination.

While on life support, neurologists used angiography to image the damage inside the brain. They found a subarachnoid hemorrhage, whereas a bulging blood vessel burst in the brain, bleeding out in the space between the brain and the tissue covering the brain. The ensuing swelling cut off oxygen to the brain and caused brain death. On February 10, 2021, Sarah reportedly had “no brain activity.” Some of the woman’s organs are now being procured, so they can be donated to other people around the world.

Doctors warn FDA about COVID vaccines causing autoimmune attacks in the heart and brain

Experimental COVID-19 vaccines may cause inflammation along the cardiovascular system, leading to heart attack and/or stroke. This serious issue was brought forth to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) by Dr. J. Patrick Whelan, M.D., Ph.D. and further confirmed by cardiothoracic surgeon, Dr. Hooman Noorchashm, M.D., Ph.D. The two doctors warned that a recently-infected patient who is subject to COVID-19 vaccination is likely to suffer from autoimmune attacks along the ACE-2 receptors present in the heart, and in the microvasculature of the brain, liver and kidney. If viral antigens are present in the tissues of recipients at the time of vaccination, the vaccine-augmented immune response will turn the immune system against those tissues, causing inflammation that can lead to blood clot formation.

This severe adverse event is likely cause of death for the elderly who are vaccinated despite recently being infected. There is no adequate screening process to ensure that this autoimmune attack doesn’t occur. The elderly are not the only people vulnerable to vaccine injury and death. Pfizer’s experimental COVID-19 vaccine could be the main cause behind the sudden death of Sarah Sickles, a 28-year-old nurse from Wisconsin. The Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System has captured five permanent disabilities in Wisconsin, 58 ER visits, and eleven deaths in just one month. This is the first case in Wisconsin of someone under 44 years of age suffering from severe COVID-19 vaccine side effects and death. There are now more than 1,170 deaths recorded in the U.S. related to the experimental mRNA vaccines, a reality that the FDA and CDC continue to ignore.

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Powering hypersonic weapons: US armed forces eyeing dangerous 5G tech

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(Natural News) Much of the conversation surrounding the benefits of 5G is geared toward the consumer side of the technology. People will be able to download videos at lightning speed and will be more connected than ever, proponents claim, although there are serious questions regarding its safety. However, some of the most important 5G applications are not civil at all – the technology will be used extensively in the military domain.

Some of its military uses are outlined in the Defense Applications of 5G Network Technology report, which was published by the Defense Science Board. This federal committee gives scientific advice to the Pentagon. Their report states: “The emergence of 5G technology, now commercially available, offers the Department of Defense the opportunity to take advantage, at minimal cost, of the benefits of this system for its own operational requirements.”

The 5G commercial network that is being built by private companies right now can be used by the American military for a much lower cost than if the network had been set up exclusively for military purposes.

Military experts expect the 5G system to play a pivotal role in using hypersonic weapons. For example, it can be used for new missiles that bear nuclear warheads and travel at speeds superior to Mach 5. These hypersonic weapons, which travel at five times the speed of sound and move a mile per second, will be flying at high altitudes on unpredictable flight paths, making them as hard to guide as they will be to intercept.

Huge quantities of data need to be gathered and transmitted in a very short period in order to maneuver these warheads on variable trajectories and allow them to change direction in milliseconds to avoid interceptor missiles.

5G for defense

This type of technology is also needed to activate defenses should we be attacked by a weapon of this type; 5G automatic systems could theoretically handle decisions that humans won’t have enough time to make on their own. Military bases and even cities will have less than a minute to react to incoming hypersonic missiles, and 5G will make it easier to process real time data on trajectories for decision-making.

There are also important uses of this technology in combat. 5G’s ability to simultaneously link millions of transceivers will undoubtedly facilitate communication among military personnel and allow them to transmit photos, maps and other vital information about operations in progress at dizzying speeds to improve situational awareness.

The military can also take advantage of the high-frequency and short-wavelength millimeter wave spectrum used by 5G. Its short range means that it is well suited for smart military bases and command posts because the signal will not propagate too far, making it less likely that enemies will be able to detect it.

When it comes to special forces and secret services, the benefits of 5G are numerous. Its speed and connectivity will allow espionage systems to reach unprecedented levels of efficiency. It will also make drones more dangerous by allowing them to identify and target people using facial recognition and other methods.

Like all technology, 5G will also make us highly vulnerable. The network itself could become an attractive target for cyber-attacks and other acts of war being carried out with cutting-edge weaponry. In fact, the 5G network is already viewed as critical infrastructure and is being carefully protected before it is even fully built.

While the focus on 5G’s dangers to human health and the environment is absolutely warranted, it is also important not to lose sight of the military implications of 5G. After all, it is not just the United States that is developing this technology for military purposes; our enemies, like China and other countries, are also making great strides in this realm.

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