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Senate Moves Forward With Direct Primary Care Bill

The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

With supporters saying the proposal would provide more flexibility in health care, a key Senate committee Tuesday approved moving forward in Florida with what are known as "direct primary care" agreements.

The Senate Appropriations Committee approved a bill (SB 240), sponsored by Sen. Tom Lee, R-Thonotosassa, positioning the measure to go to the full Senate. The House last month overwhelmingly approved its version of the bill (HB 161).

The concept involves patients entering into contracts with physicians for primary-care services, effectively cutting out the role of insurers. The bills, in part, would make clear that such agreements are not insurance and are not covered by state insurance regulations. Lee said the concept is gaining popularity across the country.

"It seems to be working in creating greater access," Lee says.