Episode # 215 – E-Patient Dave DeBronkart Gave a Standing Ovation Ted Talk and Clarifies the Patient Led Healthcare Revolution.

In this episode of Primary Care Cures, Dave DeBronkart, Speaker, Author, Analyst, & Owner of e-PatientDave LLC joins Ron to discuss the power of the patient. Dave shares his experience surviving stage 4 kidney cancer, emphasizes the importance of ‘participatory medicine’, and how it helps healthcare achieve its potential while saving countless lives in the process

Dave deBronkart, known on the internet as e-Patient Dave, is the author of the highly rated Let Patients Help: A Patient Engagement Handbook and one of the world’s leading advocates for patient engagement. After beating stage IV kidney cancer in 2007 he became a blogger, health policy advisor and international keynote speaker. An accomplished speaker in his professional life before cancer, he is today the best-known spokesman for the patient engagement movement, attending over 650 conferences and policy meetings in 26 countries, including testifying in Washington for patient access to the medical record under Meaningful Use.

A co-founder and chair emeritus of the Society for Participatory Medicine, e-Patient Dave has appeared in TimeU.S. NewsUSA TodayWiredMIT Technology Review, and the HealthLeaders cover story “Patient of the Future.” His writings have been published in the British Medical Journal, the Patient Experience Journal,  iHealthBeat, and the conference journal of the American Society for Clinical Oncology. In 2009 HealthLeaders named him and his doctor to their annual list of “20 People Who Make Healthcare Better,” and he’s appeared on the cover of Healthcare IT News and the Australian GP magazine Good Practice.

Dave’s TED Talk Let Patients Help went viral, and for years was in the top half of the most viewed TED Talks of all time with over a half million views; volunteers have added subtitles in 26 languages, indicating the global appeal of his message. In 2012 the National Library of Medicine announced that it’s capturing his blog in its History of Medicine Division, and he was the Mayo Clinic’s 2015 Visiting Professor in Internal Medicine.

 

Episode # 214 – Meet Taylor Coffman and Susannah Fox – Who After Serving as CTO for HHS Wrote Rebel Health. Taylor is an Actress and Producer Who is a Fine Example of this Patient Led Heath Movement Outlined.

In this episode Ron chats with Taylor Coffman and Susannah Fox. Here, Taylor discusses her difficult journey battling with a rare disease while being a new mother with an infant. She also dives into the importance of sharing her healthcare challenges with others as a way to give hope and advocate for people similar healthcare issues. Susannah discusses the patient lead revolution she explores in her book “Rebel Health: A Field Guide to the Patient-Led Revolution in Medical Care”. She also elaborates on the 4 archetypes she mentions in her book and the different roles they play in the revolution. Susannah offers hope and a roadmap for the way patients can revolutionize the way patients seek and receive care in America.

Taylor Coffman is a multi-hyphenate creative from the east coast. She is the author of the Substack Rare Disease Girl. Her article in the Huffington Post on patient empowerment trended to Number 1 on Apple News. As an actor, Coffman has recurred on HBO’s Silicon Valley directed by Mike Judge, CBS’s Life in Pieces, Rachel Dratch’s Late Night Snack, and has appeared in Ryan Murphy’s FEUD. Behind the scenes, she worked for many years at Jimmy Kimmel Live, one of the nation’s most listened-to NPR stations, KPCC, and in podcasting at LAist Studios. She lives in Santa Monica with her musician husband, Dustbowl Revival’s Zach Lupetin, daughter, and a very needy rescue dog named Sunny.

Susannah Fox is a health and technology strategist. Her book, Rebel Health: A Field Guide to the Patient-Led Revolution in Medical Care, was recently published by MIT Press. She is a former Chief Technology Officer for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, where she led an open data and innovation lab. She has served as the entrepreneur-in-residence at the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and she directed the health portfolio at the Pew Research Center’s Internet Project.

 

Episode # 213 – Matt Ohrt of Self Fund Health. Round 2. Ideal Plan Design for Self-Insured Employers.

In this episode Ron welcomes back Matt Ohrt, Co-Founder and Chief Healthcare Officer at Self Fund Health. Here they do a deep dive into Matt’s thoughts on ideal plan designs, the importance of on-site or near-site clinics, the biggest barriers to adoption and engagement, the tribalism in health plans, and more.

Matt Ohrt and Jon Baran cofounded Self Fund Health to help brokers and employers be able to write their own healthcare success stories.  Self Fund Health combines traditional TPA, PBM, Direct Primary Care, and Direct Contracts under a single technology platform to dramatically simplify what’s needed for employers to succeed. By implementing similar approaches, progressive employers across Wisconsin have saved 10-30% on overall healthcare costs.

Growing up on a farm in Iowa, Matt learned the value of hard work, integrity, and problem-solving. Throughout his career, Matt has served as an influential executive leader, working for companies such as Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Badger Mining (#1 Great Place to Work in America awards), and recently, as the Vice President of HR & Medical Services for Merrill Steel in Schofield, WI. He is a proven transformational leader in areas of employer healthcare, lean manufacturing, and work culture.

Matt first became known in Wisconsin for his work at Merrill Steel as the VP of HR, in which he led the company on a five-year healthcare improvement journey to implement a number of healthcare services at no cost to employees and their families, such as onsite clinics, a mobile clinic (converted ambulance), physical therapy, chiropractic, MRI, bundled orthopedic surgeries, and a world-class wellness program.

Outcomes included frozen premiums for 6 consecutive years, $5.5M in total cost savings (employees and their families saved $1.7M), reduced pharmacy costs, and reduced STD/LTD/Life costs. Additionally, these efforts had very favorable effects on recruiting and retention.

In 2018 Matt founded the Healthcare Best Practice Group and in 2022, he began holding events across the state to promote a healthcare movement in Wisconsin.  Today, there are about 1,000 employers and 3200 free-market-minded individuals who participate.

For his success in providing healthcare solutions for employers:

  • Matt was chosen as the HR Professional of the Year in 2019 by the Central Wisconsin Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM);
  • In 2020, Matt received the Healthcare Transformation Award for Wisconsin;
  • Also, in 2020, Matt was given the National Employer/Purchaser Healthcare Award, an award previously won by Disney, Boeing, and Walmart.
  • In 2022, Matt was selected by the Free Market Medical Association to receive the “Be the Beacon” Award.

Matt wrote a book called: “Save Your Company, Don’t Feed the Beast – The Employer Healthcare Success Formula.”  Based on his research of the 6 mature employer healthcare success stories in which employers saved millions of dollars, while greatly improving their health plan, Matt developed a practical and understandable guide for all employers to transform their health plans.

Matt and his wife Denise live in Mosinee, Wisconsin, and serve as Champion Foster Parents for Marathon County.  They currently have 5 children, ranging from 25 to 5, and are actively adopting children out of the social services system.  In 2018, they founded NOAH; a nonprofit foster closet that freely collects, stores, and gives supplies, equipment, toys, and clothing to foster parents in Wisconsin.

  • In 2020, Matt and Denise were selected to receive the Governor’s Foster Parents of the Year award.

Matt’s education includes an AS degree from Highland Community College, a BS degree in Psychology from Western Illinois University, a MA degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from the University of Tulsa and he has completed half of the course credits toward a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership.  Additionally, Matt holds a Healthcare Certification from the Validation Institute, a Lean Manufacturing Certification from the University of Michigan, a Six Sigma Black Belt certification, a Martial Arts Black Belt certification, and he is a graduate of Zappos Culture Camp.

Episode # 212 – Linda Komisak Launched Care Limited Because Nurses are the Ultimate Quality Metric of a Hospital and its Services. Ultimate Transparency.

Ever wish there was a sort of Kelly Blue Book for hospitals? Here, Ron has a chat with Linda Komisak, the COO and Co-Founder of CareLuminate Inc – ‘a safe place for nurses to report on the quality and safety of care in their organizations’. Throughout their conversation, they discuss why she feels interviewing nurses for feedback about their facility is a more relevant quality metric than Leapfrog or CMS star ratings, where she sees CareLiminate growing in the next few years, and much more!

Linda Komisak co-founded CareLuminate with Taylor Davis in late Spring 2023, bringing with her an impressive portfolio of delighted healthcare clients. She has an impeccable reputation for creating great experiences for healthcare systems, partners and ultimately, patients.

As an RN herself, she knows that every nurse has an important story to tell. Linda leads CareLuminate operations and creatively drives meaningful new insights into the way both hospitals and healthcare workers perceive quality in their work environments.

Linda has worked for some of the big name EHR vendors, several small privately held digital health/revenue cycle companies, and has run her own successful consultancy, most recently helping large healthcare systems find, onboard, and retain temporary/contract staff.

She lives in Frisco TX and in her free time enjoys volunteering, reading, Pilates, walks with her husband, cooking meals with five or fewer ingredients (spices don’t count), the Oxford comma, and traveling.

Episode # 211 – Matt Ohrt Won Local, Regional, State, and National Awards for His Direct Care Leadership and Plan Design. Listen In.

This episode features Matt Ohrt, Co-Founder and Chief Healthcare Officer at Self Fund Health. Here he discusses his career background and how when he was the VP of HR at a steel company in Wisconsin, he implemented numerous game-changing improvements to employee healthcare benefits. He dives into how these changes saved $5.5M in total costs, improved employee health, and positively impacted employee retention. Matt shares how these experiences, along with a personal health issue he faced, inspired him to create Self Fund Health. Self Fund Health simplifies what is needed for employers to succeed when it comes to employee health benefits.

Matt Ohrt and Jon Baran cofounded Self Fund Health to help brokers and employers be able to write their own healthcare success stories.  Self Fund Health combines traditional TPA, PBM, Direct Primary Care, and Direct Contracts under a single technology platform to dramatically simplify what’s needed for employers to succeed. By implementing similar approaches, progressive employers across Wisconsin have saved 10-30% on overall healthcare costs.

Growing up on a farm in Iowa, Matt learned the value of hard work, integrity, and problem-solving. Throughout his career, Matt has served as an influential executive leader, working for companies such as Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Badger Mining (#1 Great Place to Work in America awards), and recently, as the Vice President of HR & Medical Services for Merrill Steel in Schofield, WI. He is a proven transformational leader in areas of employer healthcare, lean manufacturing, and work culture.

Matt first became known in Wisconsin for his work at Merrill Steel as the VP of HR, in which he led the company on a five-year healthcare improvement journey to implement a number of healthcare services at no cost to employees and their families, such as onsite clinics, a mobile clinic (converted ambulance), physical therapy, chiropractic, MRI, bundled orthopedic surgeries, and a world-class wellness program.

Outcomes included frozen premiums for 6 consecutive years, $5.5M in total cost savings (employees and their families saved $1.7M), reduced pharmacy costs, and reduced STD/LTD/Life costs. Additionally, these efforts had very favorable effects on recruiting and retention.

In 2018 Matt founded the Healthcare Best Practice Group and in 2022, he began holding events across the state to promote a healthcare movement in Wisconsin.  Today, there are about 1,000 employers and 3200 free-market-minded individuals who participate.

For his success in providing healthcare solutions for employers:

  • Matt was chosen as the HR Professional of the Year in 2019 by the Central Wisconsin Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM);
  • In 2020, Matt received the Healthcare Transformation Award for Wisconsin;
  • Also, in 2020, Matt was given the National Employer/Purchaser Healthcare Award, an award previously won by Disney, Boeing, and Walmart.
  • In 2022, Matt was selected by the Free Market Medical Association to receive the “Be the Beacon” Award.

Matt wrote a book called: “Save Your Company, Don’t Feed the Beast – The Employer Healthcare Success Formula.”  Based on his research of the 6 mature employer healthcare success stories in which employers saved millions of dollars, while greatly improving their health plan, Matt developed a practical and understandable guide for all employers to transform their health plans.

Matt and his wife Denise live in Mosinee, Wisconsin, and serve as Champion Foster Parents for Marathon County.  They currently have 5 children, ranging from 25 to 5, and are actively adopting children out of the social services system.  In 2018, they founded NOAH; a nonprofit foster closet that freely collects, stores, and gives supplies, equipment, toys, and clothing to foster parents in Wisconsin.

  • In 2020, Matt and Denise were selected to receive the Governor’s Foster Parents of the Year award.

Matt’s education includes an AS degree from Highland Community College, a BS degree in Psychology from Western Illinois University, a MA degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from the University of Tulsa and he has completed half of the course credits toward a Ph.D. in Organizational Leadership.  Additionally, Matt holds a Healthcare Certification from the Validation Institute, a Lean Manufacturing Certification from the University of Michigan, a Six Sigma Black Belt certification, a Martial Arts Black Belt certification, and he is a graduate of Zappos Culture Camp.

Episode # 210 – Sam Moen, CEO of MDDirect & Michelle Golden, HR Leader Explain How Her Past Two Wisconsin School Districts Saved Millions Going the Direct Care Route.

In today’s episode, Ron chats with Sam Moen, Co-Founder, President & COO of MDDirect and Michelle Golden, the Interim Executive Director for Administration for the Eau Claire Area School District. They talk about how MDDirect is transforming specialty care by producing faster outcomes with lower cost of care. They also share insights into Michelle’s former organization’s experience partnering with MDDirect, how lessening the amount of unnecessary surgeries has tremendously helped lower costs, and much more.

Sam Moen

Sam is a recognized leader and published author on innovative healthcare solutions.  He currently leads the industry’s first direct to specialist company’s operations MDDirect.

He engages with organizations to reduce their overall healthcare costs by getting employees to the clinical expert immediately reducing unnecessary care.

Sam is focused on making healthcare a better experience and delivering higher quality (quality = outcomes / cost + time).  MDDirect brings tools such as a web-based platform, evidence-based medicine, bundled payments contracts, and results oriented employee training.

He helps organizations improve employee care for Orthopedics (musculoskeletal), Workers Compensation Injury, Gastrointestinal, OB/Maternity, ENT, while continuing to add additional services.

He has built and taken to market several innovative solutions for some of the nation’s largest healthcare stakeholders. He has worked with over 50+ organizations such as Stanford Health Care, Intermountain Health System, Ascension, United Health Care, Optum, Twin Cities Orthopedics, Dignity Health and many more reducing healthcare’s overall expense. He has worked on the surgical bundled payment model with some of the largest orthopedic groups totalling in over 10,000 completed bundled surgeries. His work spans leadership of all facets in implementing a bundled solution: employer, payer and provider partnerships, contracting, clinical management, physician buy in, care coordination and management, patient optimization and complication reduction.

Sam was born, raised and educated in the Twin Cities.  He loves spending time with his family, friends a. He enjoys the process of learning whether it be downhill skiing, reading, coffee, traveling, golfing, meditation, the body’s production of energy and somehow most conversation turns back to the family business of healthcare.

Michelle Golden

Michelle Golden recently retired from the Chippewa Falls Area Unified School District in June of 2023, as the Executive Director of Human Resources & Public Relations. She became the Executive Director of WASPA (Wisconsin Association of School Personnel Administrators) in July 2023. She is also the Interim Executive Director for Administration for the Eau Claire School District. She has a master’s degree in educational leadership, as well as Human Resource Management.

She lives in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, with her husband, Tim, and has two daughters, Hannah and Hailey who are off pursuing their dreams.

While in the Chippewa Falls School District, she and her team planned and implemented an onsite clinic, which saved the district over $18 million over six years. Michelle presented this information in various venues, such as a local SHRM group, an insurance group, and other direct primary care providers. Her primary goal was to help other companies save money by providing high quality health care that does not cause financial hardship to schools and other businesses.

Michelle Golden has spent 30 plus years in public education, including teaching, coaching, principal, and administrative leadership in human resources. Her expertise is in Employee Relations, coaching and mentoring, performance improvement, risk management, leadership development, strategic planning, compliance, compensation analysis, and insurance.

Episode # 209 – Stu Clark is CEO of Premise Health, the 11M Member Leader in Direct Care -Near Site, On-Site. Who Better to Learn the State of the Industry From?

In this episode, Ron chats with Stu Clark, the Chief Executive Officer at Premise Health – the world’s leading direct healthcare company and one of the largest digital providers in the country. Throughout their conversation, they discuss the reasons why the press isn’t interested in direct primary healthcare, the importance of incorporating behavioral health into a primary care model, how Premier Health recruits doctors, and much more!

Stu Clark has served as CEO of Premise Health since its inception in 2014. He has held executive roles for more than 20 years.

Stu and his teams have helped lead the evolution of the direct healthcare industry, also known as employer-sponsored healthcare, from the early days of occupational health-only programs to today’s fully integrated, advanced primary care models. Premise operates more than 800 wellness centers across 45 states and Guam, delivering high-quality primary care, pharmacy, behavioral health, care navigation, and care management services, alongside many other types of care.

With 1 billion in annual revenue, Premise is the seventh largest private company in Nashville. It is consistently recognized as an employer of choice in our city and in the communities where it operates. Premise employs 6,000 team members.

Episode # 208 – David Goldhill Founded and Chairs Leapfrog Groups Board and Now Leads Sesame – A Fast Growth Marketplace for Consumers to Find Doctors and Market Prices Outside of Big Insurer Directories. Learn Why They’re World Class Rated by Both Parties in Net Promoter Scores.

In this episode, Ron chats with David Goldhill, Founder and CEO at Sesame, a new healthcare system for uninsured Americans and those with high-deductible plans. In their conversation, they delve into net promoter scores, the convenience and pricing of Sesame, and more. They also dive into David’s books “Catastrophic Care: Why Everything We Think We Know about Health Care Is Wrong” & “Catastrophic Care: How American Health Care Killed My Father–And How We Can Fix It”.

David Goldhill is the Founder and CEO of Sesame, which operates an innovative direct pay marketplace for the full range of health care services. Sesame launched its service in Kansas City in 2019.  Goldhill has been a leading voice of market-based health care reform since publication of 
“How American Health Care Killed My Father” as the cover story of the September 2009 issue of The Atlantic.

Goldhill is the author of “Catastrophic Care: Why Everything We Think We Know about Health Care is Wrong” (Knopf, January 2013) and of “The Real Costs of American Health Care” (Vintage 2016).  He is co-editor of New York’s Next Health Care Revolution (Manhattan Institute, 2015).  Goldhill is chair of the Board of Directors of the Leapfrog Group, an employer-sponsored organization dedicated to hospital safety and transparency.

In his business career, Goldhill was president and CEO of GSN, which operates a US cable television network seen in 80 million homes and one of the world’s largest digital games companies.  He previously served as president and COO of Universal Television Group, the largest division of Universal Studios.  In this capacity, he oversaw all operations at the company’s domestic and international cable television networks, cable and network television studios, first-run syndication business and worldwide television distribution.

Goldhill was also chairman and CEO of Independent Network Holdings, Ltd. (INTH), which created and operated the TV3 television network in Russia.  Prior, Goldhill was the CFO of Act III Communications, a privately-owned holding company with interests in television stations, movie theaters, magazines, and film/television production.  He has served as Director of Commerce Hub (CHUBA), Expedia (EXPE), eLong (LONG), and numerous private companies.

Goldhill graduated from Harvard University with a B.A. degree in history and holds a M.A. degree in history from New York University.

Episode # 207 – Joe Murad, The New CEO of Vida Health, Joined Due to Outcomes Backed Performance Guarantees Unique to the Industry.

This episode features Joe Murad, President & CEO at Vida Health. Vida Health offers its members personalized care programs for diabetes, obesity, depression, anxiety, hypertension, and more. Here, he does a deep dive in to what makes Vida Health special, what outcomes they are seeing with their members, how their program offers weekly virtual visits with providers to help ensure patient success, and more.

Joe Murad, a seasoned digital health executive, currently leads Vida Health as CEO. Joe was previously CEO of WithMe Health, driving personalized medication guidance. He also helmed PokitDok, a pivotal player in healthcare interoperability, leading to its acquisition by Change Healthcare. Joe‘s strategic impact extends to Willis Towers Watson, Extend Health, and eHealth, where he played key roles in reshaping the health benefits landscape. Joe holds a BA from the University of Southern California and resides in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Episode # 206 – Meet Guy Benjamin, CEO of Healthee and its Avatar, Zoe. Here is How to Achieve 500,000 Engaged Members Year One.

This episode features Guy Benjamin, Co-CEO & Co-Founder of Healthee. Here, he discusses how Healthee’s AI driven App simplifies healthcare navigation, providing fast, accurate guidance on plans, providers, costs and more. He also does a deep dive in to the importance of their app being user friendly and how it helps eliminate some of the confusion around benefits coverage. Their AI healthcare virtual assistant, Zoe, works to answer’s employee’s questions around what is covered, where it is covered, costs, and even reminds patients about upcoming needed screenings and appointments.

Guy Benjamin is an accomplished speaker and entrepreneur with a unique background that combines military, academic, and business experience. Born and raised in Israel, Guy spent 12 years as an F16 Fighter Pilot in the Israeli Air Force and earned a BA in Information Technologies and Physics from Ben Gurion University. After leaving the Air Force, Guy graduated from Yale School of Management and worked as an Associate Partner at McKinsey & Co., where he focused on Digital and Analytics. Guy’s passion for transforming the healthcare experience led him to co-found Healthee, a company that empowers people to take control of their health benefits and live healthier lives.