A family physician from Maine has found an incredible way to help patients who are struggling to keep up with healthcare costs.
Last month, Dr. Michael Ciampi of South Portland, Maine opted out of Medicare, Medicaid and all third-party insurance providers, according to the Bangor Daily News. By asking patients to pay out of pocket, he has lowered his overhead costs enough to reduce prices by half.
Cutting out all the additional paperwork also allows Ciampi to spend more time with his patients, according to WGME. "Instead of working for the government or working for insurance companies, we’re gonna work for the patient," he told the news source.
Ciampi began as an independent physician before spending 4 years working for a hospital, according to another report in the Bangor Daily News, but became disheartened by healthcare's "big impersonal system."
He is now able to charge as little as $50 for an office visit and $10 for some injections. "I'm freed up to do what I think is right for the patients,” he told the paper.
Last week, another establishment -- this time a Spanish restaurant -- came up with a novel way to help the disadvantaged. Unemployed patrons are allowed to volunteer in exchange for a full-course meal.