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New medical practice promises to offer old-fashioned service

There used to be a time when a doctor would be there for you every step of the way—visiting you in the hospital, spending time to listen to you instead of rushing off to the next patient, and even being available for house calls.

That time is coming back, according to Dr. Ron Haggerty, who, along with nurse practitioner Katherine "Kacki" Beamer, will be opening the Gloucester Court House office of Direct Access Internal Medicine on May 2.

"In this day and age, basically what we have is a situation where the physician is driven by volume," Haggerty said. In the current health care system, doctors are dependent upon fixed-price reimbursements from Medicare and private insurance companies for their income. Therefore, in order to make ends meet, they have to see ever-increasing numbers of patients.

Haggerty and Beamer are offering an alternative to this health care model that harkens back to the days of the country doctor. Instead of the average panel o...

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