Maine Coast teamed up with a local doctor to keep workers healthy

By Meg Haskell

Originally published by the Bangor Daily News • November 29, 2017

Lobster packing in Maine Coast York facility
Workers at Maine Coast, a wholesale seafood business based in York, pack lobsters for shipping, Company founder Tom Adams, center, has included a direct primary care option in the employee benefit package this year, in order to provide better access to routine health care.

Like many employers in Maine, Tom Adams is committed to providing his employees with meaningful health insurance as part of their benefits package. The founder in 2011 of Maine Coast, a lobster and seafood wholesale business, employs just under 50 workers at two sites, one in the town of York and another at a small satellite shipping office in Boston.

“We’ve provided health insurance since Day One. I’m a strong believer in people having health insurance,” Adams said.

But Adams, like other employers, felt the sting of rising monthly premiums and diminishing benefits of the plans he could afford to offer.

“What was being offered was being degraded every year, with higher deductibles, co-pays and premiums,” he said.

So Adams is trying something different. He’s giving employees an old-fashioned option — health care from a local doctor, paid out-of-pocket, that doesn’t tap into their insurance at all.

The company partnered with Dr. Peter Sacchetti, a local internal medicine doctor who in 2015 opened a “direct primary care” practice in York. Direct primary care providers do not bill insurance companies, Medicare, Medicaid, the VA or any other third party-payer. Instead, they typically charge a monthly membership fee for a set package of services, with additional services billed on a per-visit basis.

For a flat fee of about $60 per month — Maine Coast will pay about 70 percent and employees 30 percent, deducted from their paychecks — workers will have ready access to Sacchetti’s primary care services, including a comprehensive annual physical and three additional office visits during the year for acute illnesses, disease management, minor injuries and other routine needs. The practice offers an onsite lab and pharmacy as well…

Read the full story in the Bangor Daily News