Nicole Hemkes was growing tired of being another employee doctor.
The Madison-area physician spent much of the past decade employed at hospital or group health care facilities, much like the vast majority of her peers in medicine. In fact, less than a third of physicians identified as private practice owners, according to a 2018 survey by the Physicians Foundation and Merritt Hawkins.
Hemkes had had her share of insurance-based medicine, seeing her standard 30 patients a day, spending more time on paperwork than with the people she is supposed to serve.
“A 10- or 15-minute appointment is just not enough,” she recently told MacIver News Service. “You’re kind of hooked to the computers because you have to have so much documentation done that you need to submit to a code that is going to bill for that visit, and that’s the way the health system gets paid.”
“So much of what we do seems to be more focused on the billing and the payment rather than the patient,” the physician said.