Episode # 194 – Sharon Pearce is a Nationally Active Nursing Thought Leader Among 4M Nurses. 50% Leave the Bedside by Year 2. Here’s the Fix She’s Working On.

In this episode Ron chats with Sharon Pearce, Co-Chair of the Commission for Nurse Reimbursement. Here she discusses how nursing compensation has changed since hospitals have cut costs in nursing, how to improve compensation for nursing while improving nursing ratios, how burnout in nursing has gotten worse since COVID-19, her podcast “Beyond the Mask”, the importance of the public supporting nurses, and more.

Sharon graduated from the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Hospital Nurse Anesthesia program in 1992.  She resides in North Carolina and currently works 1099 as a CRNA. Professional service includes being a past President of the North Carolina Association of Nurse Anesthetists. She served three years on the AANA (American Association of Nurse Anesthetists) Public Relations (PR) committee and did Media Training for state associations in conjunction with the AANA Senior Director of Strategic Communications. Sharon was the producer of the AANA PR award-winning video, “The Best Kept Secret in Healthcare.” She chaired the Government Relations Committee of the AANA in 2009-2010 and has been a registered lobbyist for many years with legislative involvement for over 20 years. Board of Director service at the national level of the AANA has included Region 2 Director, Vice President, President-Elect, and President in 2014-2015. She was also inducted into the inaugural Fellows class of the AANA. Within the nursing community, she has served on the executive committee of the Nursing Organizational Alliance (NOA), which represents over 50 nursing organizations. Sharon also co-hosts a podcast, “Beyond the Mask,” which is one of the top 50 medical podcasts in the country and won the AANA PR award in 2021.  She completed her DNP in Health Care Leadership, Systems & Policy at Yale University in 2021. She was in the inaugural class of Fellows in the AANA. She was inducted into FAAN in 2022. She is a highly sought after national and international speaker on advocacy, legislative involvement, and various clinical topics.

Sharon ran for the North Carolina State House of Representatives in 2016.  Unfortunately, she was unsuccessful in her bid. The anesthesiologists opened a super PAC and gave personal donations to her opponent in excess of a quarter of a million dollars.

Sharon now co-chairs the Commission on Nurse Reimbursement with Rebecca Love. The Commission has a lofty goal to change the way nursing is reimbursed for the valuable work nurses do.

In the civic arena, Sharon has been involved in the diabetic community for many years. She is the daughter of an insulin-dependent diabetic as well as the mother of an insulin-dependent diabetic.  One of her twins was diagnosed at the age of five and has worn an insulin pump for nearly 22 years.  She served on the board of directors of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Also, she started and chaired a Walk to Cure Diabetes in High Point North Carolina for four years, which raised nearly half a million dollars for diabetes research.  Sharon has served on the Diabetes Advisory Council in North Carolina for 17 years.

Sharon has been married to Mike Pearce for 39 years. They have three grown children- Brett, and twins Michelle and Danielle. Her daughter Michelle is married to Grant Brekken, also a CRNA, keeping the profession in the family.

Episode # 193 – Frank Dumont Round 2. Members of Virta Health have Reduced a1c 60% Below Baseline for 5 Years Across Demographics Age and Sex and at Scale.

In this episode Dr. Frank Dumont returns to the show. Frank is the Commercial Medical Director at Virta Health. Here, he discusses reversing Type 2 diabetes, how Virta has been able to replicate the success they have seen in their clinical trials, and more. He also shares how Virta has been able to deprescribe diabetes medication, even across multiple demographics, as their patients have changed their lifestyles.

Dr. Frank Dumont currently serves as a clinician and Commercial Medical Director at Virta Health. Prior to joining Virta, he worked in a hospital-owned clinic for nearly 20 years, where he practiced outpatient and inpatient medicine and served as medical director of the wellness service line for the medical center. Dr. Dumont has been devoted to improving healthcare delivery for over two decades, participating in organized medicine as a young physician representative to the AMA and serving on the Colorado Medical Society Board of Directors. He received his MD from the University of Colorado School of Medicine and today is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians. Dr. Dumont lives in Estes Park, Colorado at the eastern entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park.

Episode # 192 – Preston Alexander Knows a Thing or Two About Healthcare Innovation.

In this episode, Ron has a discussion with Preston Alexander, Founder & President of One Degree Medical. Here, Preston chats about the winners of DPCs and why they aren’t as prevalent as they should be, what’s wrong with monopolized health systems, the problem with non-profit health systems, and much more.

Preston Alexander is a healthcare entrepreneur currently serving as an advisor and consultant to healthcare companies of all stages. His passion for healthcare is lies in helping to create a more affordable, accessible, and equitable system. Prior to becoming a founder, Preston worked for large, global medical device companies as a product manager, responsible for over $100M in portfolios. It was through this experience that Preston gained a deeper understanding of how healthcare and specifically large integrated hospital systems worked.

Preston also writes extensively about health systems and companies, breaking down the business and finance basics to equip more people, especially clinicians with the tools and resources they need to get into the business of healthcare. He believes that clinicians are key to saving healthcare and must take back the business to restore the practice of medicine.

Preston currently lives in Atlanta, GA with his wife and two daughters. Outside of obsessing about healthcare and working to find better solutions, he spends as much time as he can with his family and occasionally finds time to go rock climbing.

Episode # 191 – Dr. Brian Fretwell Offers Generics at Pennies a Pill so Who Needs a PBM ? This Offering is Yet Another Example How Employers, Consumers, and DPC Docs can Sidestep the Medication Racket.

In this episode, Ron chats with Dr. Brian Fretwell, President and CEO of Direct Primary Care Associates and myDPCrx – a DPC provider driven pharmacy program that sells over 1,000 generic prescriptions for pennies on the dollar. Here, he answers the questions of what led him to start myDPCrx, where his 5 clinics are located, how this is changing the face of pharmacy, and more.

Mr. Fretwell  calls Cleveland home. He is a former field and flight Paramedic. He attended University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. His medical education was completed at Nova Southeastern University with a dual degree in PA studies and Masters in Public Health. He has over 27 years experience in Emergency, Family, and Occupational Medicine. As CEO of Direct Primary Care Associates, Mr. Fretwell has created and continues to develop a team of like-minded, forward thinking individuals who share his unique vision for improving access to quality affordable healthcare through innovative solutions for individuals and businesses throughout the region.

Brian enjoys spending quality time with his children. He also spends most fall weekends watching Tennessee football. An avid conservationist and outdoorsman he also spends much time hunting, fishing, surfing, and boating.

Episode # 190 – Dr Kenneth Qiu is Spotting the DPC Trends with a Keen Eye. Here is a Good Listen.

In this episode, Ron talks DPCs with Dr. Kenneth Qiu, Founder of EuDoc, & Associate Clinical Professor at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine. Here, Kenneth discusses what he sees the outlook for DPCs in the next year, what it is like to be a DPC practitioner himself, his work educating med students on DPCs, and much more.

Kenneth Qiu, MD is a board certified family physician with a strong passion for direct primary care and interest in primary care innovation. He has been an active member of the DPC community since he learned about the model during his fourth year of medical school and started his own DPC practice, EuDoc, straight out of residency. His involvement has led him to be a member of the DPC Alliance Board and DPC Coalition Steering Committee. His interest in primary care innovation has led to the creation of X = Primary Care, or XPC for short, where he and his friend and co-founder Paulius Mui, MD dive into all sorts of primary care innovation. Dr. Qiu currently also advises health tech companies and teaches at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Medicine, where he completed medical school.

Episode # 189 – Katy Talento Returns for Round 3 – She’s Managing the Association for 1 Million Health Care Sharing Ministries Members, Advising Employers and Has a Lot to Say About Transparency and DPC.

In this episode Katy Talento, Epidemiologist, Executive Director at Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries, & CEO of AllBetter Health rejoins the show for a third time. AllBetter Health is a next-gen health benefits advisory firm that saves employers & other groups money while offering benefits great benefits including zero deductibles. Here, she discusses what healthcare sharing ministries are, how many people are enrolled in this type of model, how the consumer wins with this model, and much more.

Katy Talento, President of KFT Consulting, Epidemiologist, Executive Director at Alliance of Health Care Sharing Ministries, & CEO of AllBetter Health is a licensed health benefits consultant, veteran health policy advisor and epidemiologist. She recently left the White House as the top health advisor to President Donald Trump on the Domestic Policy Council, where her job was to advance the president’s agenda to increase health care price transparency and price competition, end surprise medical bills, lower prescription drug prices, expand affordable options in the individual and group/ERISA markets, reduce the burdens of the Affordable Care Act, promote innovative employer sponsored coverage models, expand health IT interoperability, combat the opioids and other drug addiction crisis, eliminate domestic HIV/AIDS, and promote bioethics in life sciences.

 Prior to her White House appointment, Katy served five U.S. Senators over a 15-year period, including as top health advisor and manager of legislative staff and oversight investigators. She also worked in the private sector helping multinational energy companies protect their global workforce from infectious diseases such as malaria, dengue and the largest community-based HIV/AIDS service organization in the US. On the faculty at Georgetown University Medical School, Katy managed the Washington site of a multi-site NIH-funded pulmonology study. 

 A compelling communicator, Katy has delivered speeches to large audiences, served as Director of Speechwriting for the Republican National Committee during the successful 2010 election cycle, and has written a number of published opinion pieces, web copy, and video scripts. She spent two years as a Catholic nun and has worked with the poorest of the poor from East Africa, to industrial Russia and inner-city America. Katy received a Master of Science degree in Infectious Disease Epidemiology from Harvard School of Public Health and an undergraduate degree in Sociology from the University of Virginia. She lives in suburban northern Virginia with her husband and two children.

Episode # 188 – Jonathan Spero Leads Asterias Health and InHouse Physicians – DPC Plus with 1 Million Members at 97% NPS and 95% Renewal Rates. Here is the How and Why.

In this episode, Ron chats with Jonathan Spero, CEO at InHouse Physicians – the powerhouse behind the disruptive innovation he founded – Asterias Health. Asterias Health is a next-gen virtual & in-person direct primary care model that addresses the physical, behavioral, emotional, and social needs for its patients. Here, they discuss all of the benefits Asterias offers – including, Rx home delivery, chronic condition management, wellness programs, and more. Here he discusses how Asteria’s 1,000,000+ members are winning, why ~95% of these members continue to renew their contracts year after year, what the care model will look like in 3-5 years, and more.

Founder and CEO of InHouse Physicians and Asterias Health, Jonathan Spero, M.D. is an expert on medical risk management in the meeting industry, healthcare cost containment in the employer space, and in the field of neurobiology of human performance. Dr. Spero grew up in Arizona and completed his education at the University of California. He completed a residency in Internal Medicine at Scripps Mercy San Diego and practices both Internal and Emergency Medicine. His passion is creating disruptive innovation in providing a Direct Primary Care solution for employers across the country.

Episode # 187 – Viral Patel, MD, CEO of Radish Health has a 4.9 Star Rating, 94% NPS Score from Docs and Offers Mental Health, Nav, and a Registered Dietician to their DPC. Here’s How!

In this episode, Ron is joined by Viral Patel, Founder and CEO at Radish Health – a highly rated NYC based digital first primary care platform giving employers access to primary care, mental health services, a registered dietician, and a care navigator. Here, Viral discusses the cost per month for employers. He also answers questions around how clinicians, employers, & patients are “winners” in using this service, how many providers are currently employed at Radish Health, and more.

Viral Patel is the founder and CEO of Radish Health, a platform that keeps organizations healthy, happy, and productive by providing accessible primary care and mental health services.  Prior to Radish, Viral was an emergency medicine physician and Medical Director at Oscar Health where he helped build their in-house telehealth practice.

Episode # 186 – Wayne Orchard with Lyric Health is the Largest DPC Provider with 4M Members. Retention of Docs, Members, and Employers are All Impressive. Get Why Here.

In this episode, Ron chats with Wayne Orchard, Partner & Executive Vice President at Lyric Health, MyTelemedicine, and GoLexi. Here, they discuss Lyric Health, a fully integrated virtual primary care platform that provides instant access to a “doc in your pocket”. Wayne also discusses how the pandemic helped him and his partner realize that they needed to focus more on day-to-day care rather than episodic care. He also answers the questions of how he recruits & retains clinicians, what the internal metrics of Lyric look like, how they are saving employers’ money, and more.

Wayne Orchard has over 15 years of experience in the Virtual Healthcare space. He and 3 other partners started MyTelemedicine in 2015 with the mission to deliver telehealth in a different way. In a way that people want to consume their healthcare. With ease of use, little administration, and effectiveness. MyTelemedicine has grown to over 4 million users and rebranded the service to Lyric Health in 2022 as it is now a Head-to-Toe Virtual Care service provider that covers Urgent and Primary Care, along with integrated labs and behavioral health. Lyric is leading the charge into the Virtual Primary Care services that are uncovering the underlying conditions to help mitigate the risk of unnecessary hospitalization claims.

Episode # 185 – Satish Srinivasan with DiRx is Showing Us How to Buy Meds at a Fraction of the Costs. Often at Only $3-4 a fill.

In this episode, Ron chats with Satish Srinivasan, Founder & Chief Executive Officer at DiRx, a digital pharmacy platform that provides savings for thousands of FDA-approved generic drugs – with no insurance requirement. Satish went into starting DiRx knowing the real cost of medicine because of his 25+ years in the generic pharmaceutical industry. Here, Satish discusses how DiRx is able to bring affordable drug access to the average American, the speed at which they are able to ship drugs directly to the consumer, what makes his business successful, and much more.

Satish Srinivasan is the Founder & CEO of DiRx, a new digital health platform designed to improve medication affordability for Americans that are unable to access it under the health insurance-based framework.
Satish has 25+ years’ experience and understanding of generic pharmaceutical channel economics underlined DiRx’s vision for a simple, cash-based subscription model built around the customer and a reimagined pharmacy access experience.

Through a digital platform, meaningful consumer outreach, and enhanced levels of customer service, DiRx seeks to expand access and enable more people to live healthier lives.