My friend, Jack Brown, from Oregon has reminded me of a term that I was familiar with, but one I never use. But it’s one I’m going to start using.
Disintermediation – a term which describes the removal of all unnecessary parties in any market exchange.
Disintermediation is a term that characterizes the activities and the mission of the Free Market Medical Association, after all, it’s an association that is designed to connect buyers and sellers with only the intermediaries that facilitate these exchanges.
This makes the prices very clear, undistorted, and invariably lower and more value-based.
I’d like to give you an example of how disintermediation has worked in an example I know about personally. A friend of mine takes a drug called Topamax, which is used for headache suppression. The pharmacist goofed when they filled it the last time and left this friend of mine a one-month supply short.
So they had everything they needed except a month. A one-month supply – 60 pills – was quoted to this friend of mine at a little over $500. Several calls were made, one of which I made for this friend, to a direct primary care doctor and good friend of mine, Jeffrey Davenport. He was able to get this drug – all 60 pills – for $18. All of the layers were stripped away and that was the true cost of the drug.
The people that made the Topamax did not lose money selling that to the wholesaler from whom Dr. Davenport and his direct primary care practice had secured this drug. They were making money and were happy to accept $18 for 60 pills.
This is a good example of the power of disintermediation and it’s not uncommon that surgeries, for instance, at the Surgery Center of Oklahoma are one-sixth or one-tenth of what the big so-called not-for-profit hospitals charge for the same thing, primarily because all of the layers have been stripped away and the buyer and the seller are interacting directly.
This is a powerful example and I want to thank Jack Brown for reminding me that this term needs to be used more. And I will use it more, Jack.
I hope to see you all at the conference in the next couple of days. There are some last-minute seats that remain. The details are at FMMA.org should you wish to attend. Thank you.