How One Hendersonville Doctor Is Making Primary Care Personal

by | Dec 2023

WHILE MANY of her peers finished their residencies and signed lengthy contracts with hospitals across the country, Dr. Kym Moyer chose a different path. The physician at Magnolia Family Medicine has embraced an up-and-coming and unconventional approach to medical practice. 

Dr. Moyer is more focused on the sacred patient-doctor relationship than the hassles of health insurance. That’s exactly why her practice’s model, Direct Primary Care (DPC), is gaining traction across the United States. 

“I’ll tell you that when most physicians come out of residency, it is the new normal for a physician to sign a contract and become employed with a hospital corporation,” Dr. Moyer said. In these settings, physicians are often pressured to see 20-30 patients a day, with administrators focusing on generating revenue. This can lead to rushed appointments, long waiting times, and a gap between the doctor’s intentions and corporate goals. 

“The physician wants to spend time with the patient usually, but the administration wants the doctors to see more patients, so they bring in more revenue for the clinic,” Dr. Moyer said. “So it’s kind of conflicting.” 

But rather than becoming an employee of a hospital group, Dr. Moyer is offering health care in Hendersonville the way she believes it should be. 

“When I was in residency, I decided early on I would take a different route,” she said. “So I did not join a hospital group; I actually opened my practice on my own, and I decided to do everything and take away all the hassles for patients in health care.” 

Like any doctor’s office, Dr. Moyer’s practice offers physical exams, blood work, minor procedures, and treatment for mental health issues. But Magnolia Family Medicine, a direct primary care clinic, distinguishes itself in several ways. First, there are no waiting rooms. Patients are greeted at the door by their doctor, eliminating the wait and anxiety often associated with health care visits. 

Magnolia sees significantly fewer patients than the typical family doctor, who may serve 2,000 to 3,000 patients. Dr. Moyer said she will not accept new patients when she thinks it’ll interfere with the quality of their care. It allows her to foster strong relationships and maintain personalized care. 

“I enjoy getting to know my patients by name, their job, their families, and how their lifestyle impacts their health,” she said. 

Dr. Moyer’s approach also emphasizes open and convenient communication. Patients have her cell phone number and can call, text, or email her anytime. Typically, appointments are available that same day or the next. There are no copays, and her practice offers price transparency. Patients know the cost of services upfront, eliminating the surprises often accompanying traditional health care billing. 

“My motivation is just being able to be there for my patients and when they need me the most,” she said. 

The heart of her model, and what makes it possible, is the monthly membership fee. Adults pay $85 per month, while children are charged $35. According to Dr. Moyer, this membership structure allows patients to schedule appointments easily, often on the same or the following day, and ensures that they receive focused, unhurried care. While her approach might initially sound expensive, it surprises many to find out how affordable it is. 

“Many people seem surprised when they hear the monthly fee,” Dr Moyer said. “Our online videos have received an overwhelmingly positive response from people across the U.S.” 

Dr. Moyer’s TikTok videos about her practice have had hundreds of thousands of views and several long-distance phone calls to her Hendersonville office. 

Dr. Moyer specified that while this seems like the bright and shining future of medicine, it’s only a partial aspect of comprehensive health care. This is like having car insurance for your car but still paying out of pocket for regular maintenance. Many of her patients use their health insurance for hospital visits, major surgeries, and more significant health issues but rely on her for their day-to-day care. 

“They can come to me for their primary care needs, such as sick visits, blood work, physicals, minor procedures, etc., and then we use their insurance for catastrophic events,” she said. 

Direct Primary Care is a growing trend among doctors in the U.S. Dr. Moyer said she sought out and learned about the approach from older DPC physicians who were more established. She was mentored by several other physicians in neighboring states and still goes to DPC conferences every year with peers from across the country. 

“It’s the happiest group of doctors that you’ll find at any conference because they’re actually just loving working and taking care of patients the way that we always wanted to,” Moyer said. “So it’s really cool to be back to that old-school way of doctors teaching doctors.” 

While this is a new way of visiting the doctor today, the Direct Primary Care health care model is reminiscent of the small-town doctors of yesteryear, who would make house calls and know their patients personally. 

“It’s almost like taking it back a hundred years ago to how medicine used to be practiced,” Dr. Moyer said. “I practice modern medicine but deliver it the old-fashioned way.” GN 

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