According to an article in today's Wall Street Journal, prepaid, flat-fee systems are becoming more common among primary care physicians. Patients pay an annual or monthly fee, and in return get access to ongoing care from a general practitioner. Some of the plans described in the WSJ even include lab work, x-rays, and generic drugs. From the article:
"Several hundred doctors across the country [are] offering flat-rate, pay-in-advance plans. Though still experimental, proponents argue that the approach tackles two crises in U.S. health care: the rapid decline of doctors practicing primary-care medicine and the growing number of Americans who are either uninsured or underinsured."
This is a really interesting approach to health coverage--especially when it's paired with a catastrophic insurance plan. (These pre-paid plans won't help if you need a hospital visit.) If you're a freelancer and you're uninsured, would you consider signing up for such a program? WSJ article via Kaiser Network.