DPC Advisory Board
Garrison Bliss, MD, Chairman - DPCC
BlissMD - Seattle, WA
Dr. Bliss is widely credited with being the first in the country to adopt the DPC model. He was the founder of Qliance, the first large scale DPC practice in the country. Dr. Bliss graduated Harvard College with a Bachelor of Arts in Biology in 1972, University of Utah Doctor of Medicine 1977; Internship: University of Washington Internal Medicine 1977-1978 Residency: University of Washington Internal Medicine 1978-1980.
Erika Bliss, MD
Equinox Primary Care
A trail-blazer in DPC, Erika runs Equinox after serving as CEO of Qliance. Erika is a graduate of the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine. She received her undergraduate degree in History from San Francisco State University and a Master's degree in Latin American Studies from Stanford. She completed her medical training at the Swedish Family Medicine Residency Program in Seattle in 2003. She was also Clinical Site Director and Director of Clinical Quality at Carolyn Downs Family Medical Center in Seattle where she served as staff physician.
Rushika Fernandopulle, MD
Rushika has spent more than ten ears involved in efforts to improve the quality of healthcare delivered to patients. He was the first Executive Director of the Harvard Interfaculty Program for Health Systems Improvement, and served as a Managing Director of the Advisory Board Company. He serves on the faculty and earned his AB, MD, and MPP from Harvard University. He completed his clinical training at the Massachusetts General Hospital.
Clint Flanagan, MD
Clint is the founder of Nextera Healthcare, the first Direct Primary Care company in Colorado and has been a local Primary Care physician and Emergency Medicine physician for over a decade. He is Board Certified in Family Medicine and has over 14 years experience as an ER physician and maintains certificates in Advanced Cardiac and Advanced Trauma Life Support. Clint completed medical school at the University of Nebraska Medical Center then went on to residency at St Mary’s Family Medicine Program in Grand Junction, Colorado.
As CEO and Founder of R-Health, Mason draws on broad and successful experience as an investor, entrepreneur, and start-up company executive. He has launched and managed growth-stage companies across multiple industries, including renewable energy, information technology,real estate, and healthcare. He is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of the Wharton School of Business of the University of Pennsylvania. He currently serves on the boards of several non-profit organizations in Greater Philadelphia.
Chris Miller, MBA
Chris brings over 12 years of leadership, strategic analysis, and corporate development experience from notable health care organizations. He oversees the strategy and growth of Paladina Health bringing quality direct primary care to patients across the country. To ensure Paladina provides a superior level of care, he works in partnership with our clinical operations, field operations, population health management and business development teams.
Kathryn Dreger, MD
Prime-plc - Arlington, VA
After 14 years in a private Internal Medicine practice, Dr. Kathryn Dreger founded Prime Direct Primary Care, PLC to focus on innovative patient care. She compliments her clinical practice with teaching Georgetown University medical students and residents as an Assistant Professor of Medicine. She is Vice Chief of the Department of Medicine at Virginia Hospital Center and has also been voted by her peers as a Washingtonian “Top Doctor” annually since 2015. Dr. Dreger serves on the board of The PPRNet Foundation, a charitable organization focused on helping primary care physicians improve patient care and population health. She believes passionately that Direct Primary Care can transform the practice of medicine and provide the type of care all patients deserve.
Philip Eskew, DO, JD, MBA
Frontier Direct Primary Care
Phil also serves as VP of Clinical Development and General Counsel for Proactive MD. He completed his family medicine residency at the Heart of Lancaster Regional Medical Center in Lititz, Pennsylvania in June 2015. Phil has become one of the leading policy and legal scholars on direct primary care, and was a Visiting Scholar at the Robert Graham Center.
Julie Gunther, MD
Julie is a passionate Board Certified Physician that founded sparkMD in 2014 to take back her relationship with her patients. She is a member and Fellow of the AAFP (American Academy of Family Physicians) and a graduate of Harvard University and the University of Washington School of Medicine.
Lester Baskin, MD
Lester Baskin, M.D. is the owner of the Baskin Clinic in Portland, OR. Started in 2005, the Baskin Clinic is a direct primary care practice serving individuals, families, and employers. Lester enjoys helping people understand their medical problems and address them at the highest level—without time constraints. Lester completed his B.A. at Stanford University, 1990, his M.D. at OHSU, 1995 and Internal Medicine Residency at Legacy Portland Hospitals in 1998. He has been certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine since 1998.
Michael Freedman, MD
Evolve Medical Clinics
Dr. Mike Freedman, Founder of Evolve, has a long history of providing care to fit the needs of under-served populations in Maryland. He received his Medical Degree from Hahnemann University Medical School in Philadelphia. While there, he led a group which built the largest student-run medical system for the homeless in the country, and was awarded the 807th Daily Point of Light by then President George Bush. Then, as Medical Director of Annapolis Outreach Clinic, Dr. Freedman personally grew the number of participating physicians from roughly 12 to well over 150. He also serves on the AAMC Medical Executive Board Strategic Planning Committee.
Jeffrey Gold, MD
Gold Direct Care, PC
Dr. Jeff opened his practice Gold Direct Care in 2015 drawing on his experience in private practice and hospital based practice in Massachusetts. He completed his undergraduate degree in Biology at the University of Pennsylvania, attended the University of Massachusetts Medical School, and completed his residency in Family Medicine in 2005 in Scottsdale, AZ. Dr. Jeff is one of the leading voices in the Massachusetts Direct Primary Care Coalition.
Matthew Priddy, MD
Priority Physicians Management
Matt Priddy, M.D. is the President of Priority Physicians P.C. and co-founder of Priority Physicians Management, LLC in Indianapolis, IN. He is board certified in family medicine, served as President of the American Academy of Private Physicians (AAPP) from 2013 - 2015, and held a seat on the Board of Directors since 2012. He is passionate about direct primary care offering positive outcomes and improved patient services.
Joel Bessmer, MD
Strada Healthcare - Omaha, NE
Dr. Joel Bessmer and his wife Katherine founded Strada Healthcare in 2016 because of the growing need for cost-effective and efficient healthcare. He is the Medical Director of Strada and founder of Members MD. Dr. Bessmer is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and served as associate director of the internal medicine residency program at the University of Nebraska Medical Center.
Texas Academy of Family Physicians (TAFP), CEO
Tom Banning is the Chief Executive Officer and Executive Vice President of the Texas Academy of Family Physicians, which is Texas' largest medical specialty society with more than 6,000 members. It focuses on the role of family physicians in providing quality, comprehensive care to all Texans.
Melanie Story, MD
Dr. Melanie Story is the founder of Genesis1Health and completed her residency in Family Medicine at the University of Louisville in 2005 and was awarded Outstanding Family Medicine Resident Graduate. She has been recognized by her peers as a "Louisville Top Doctor" in Family Medicine by Louisville Magazine 2016, 2015, 2014 and 2013. She is a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, American Medical Association, Kentucky Academy of Family Physicians and the Greater Louisville Medical Society.
John Blanchard, MD
Premier Private Physicians Management LLC, CEO
Dr. John Blanchard is the founder of Premier Private Physicians and was past President of the American Academy of Private Physicians. He is board certified by the American Academy of Family Physicians in the specialty of Family Medicine and has full staff privileges at William Beaumont Hospital, where he completed three years of postgraduate residency training and served as chief resident.
Dr. James Pinckney II, MD
Dr. James Pinckney II is the founder and CEO of Diamond Physicians in Texas. Founded in 2012, Diamond Physicians is a membership medicine practice that focuses on the patient-physician relationship taking a holistic approach to medicine incorporating nutrition and fitness into the lifestyle of their clients. James has many awards and achievements such as the Jackie Robinson Foundation “42 Under 40” National Award (2014) and Super Doctors Texas Rising Stars (2015, 2016, 2017).
John is CEO of Proactive MD, a company which offers comprehensive health management solution that extends well beyond the clinic walls with access to on-site physicians, full direct primary care services, and excellent client support. Proactive MD engages the workforce, offering them a personal relationship with a primary care physician to deliver measurably better outcomes, making people happier, healthier,and more productive while significantly lowering overall medical costs for employers.
Direct Primary Care Coalition
The Executive Director of the Direct Primary Care Coalition and Founder of Capitol Advocates, a Washington, DC government relations firm, Jay has over two decades of experience as a health policy professional working with providers, employers, payers, healthcare technology firms, and states on critical delivery system reforms and advanced primary care models.
Chief Executive Officer 40th Pole Holdings, LLC
Brett is an experienced entrepreneur with a successful track record at building and capitalizing growth stage companies. He is also a proven sales and operations executive with an entrepreneurial spirit and outstanding record of delivering results in the private sector, private equity, insurance, federal, and government business settings.