About Our Office

Hickory Medical has been a central part of the of the revitalization of West Columbus Avenue in downtown Bellefontaine. We have created a state of the art medical facility in the historic King Building. We selected this site because it allows us to be easily accessible to patients and to be actively engaged in our community. 


Dr Kauffman

Why I am doing this

I grew up in Bellefontaine. From the time that I started school at Northeastern Elementary, I wanted to be a doctor. My father, Roger Kauffman, was a physician at Oakhill Medical Associates and spent his career serving this community. I loved to see his work and to hear his stories - from delivering babies to suturing up a kid who had an accident to comforting families as they prepared to lose a loved one. The type of medicine that I saw practiced and the relationships he built inspired me not only to pursue the same career, but to return to the same community. Upon completing my training, I returned to Bellefontaine and spent 9 years caring for patients at Oakhill Medical Associates. I found the experience deeply rewarding but I became increasingly frustrated with the amount of time and energy I spent dealing with insurance hassles. An increasingly broken system made it harder and harder for my patients to get the care that they needed and got in the way of the type of medicine that I want to practice.

In 2015, I decided to try to build something that would allow me to work directly for the patients and to get back to medicine the way it should be. Hickory Medical is my effort to make that happen. It is built around the ideas of the Direct Primary Care model which is a larger national effort to return to the roots of Family Medicine. At Hickory, I have found that this approach allows a Doctor-Patient relationship where patients know that I am working for them, not their insurance company. I have found the joy of giving patients the time that they need - time to explain their symptoms and concerns and time to ask questions and develop a treatment plan together. The pace and schedule of Hickory allows us to run on time so that we do not have to pull people away from their work or families to wait at the office - we generally find that patients can walk in and come directly to the room with me.

Perhaps the biggest surprise has come from the joy that our patients, nurses, and providers experience. When we have the time and the system in place to really listen, to provide essential tests and office treatments at no additional cost, and to get to know what is happening, outcomes and attitudes improve. Instead of worrying about how insurance or a billing department will code something - it has been great to just get back to doing whatever needs to be done and focusing on my patients.


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FOX45NOW.com article

About Direct Primary Care (DPC)

The goal of direct primary care is to remove many of the hassles and costs that come when health insurance is involved in health care decisions. Insurance only makes sense for expensive and unpredictable costs. If car insurance covered gasoline, windshield wipers, and tires, it would be incredibly expensive, in part because people would be less careful with how they used these things, but also because everyone would require documentation to prove what happened at every step. Healthcare is the same way. Primary care – that is, everything around the doctor-patient relationship including consultation for illness, managing of chronic disease, and access to proper and careful assessment of medications – can be done much more efficiently outside of insurance coverage.

Websites where you can read more about Direct Primary Care:
       Direct Primary Care Coalition
       Heritage Foundation DPC Report