The Single-Doctor HMO

A small town dumps its provider for a rebel medic

If you've visited a doctor anytime recently, you know the routine. You wait an hour for a 10-minute once-over, and you can't get an aspirin tablet or a Band-Aid--let alone a referral--without six bean counters and a dozen paper pushers eyeballing your entire medical history.

In the one-traffic-light Northern California town of Winters (pop. 5,300), one doctor has said no to all that. "Why in the world should you have to fill out a referral form and wait for approval when you know the approval is guaranteed?" asks Bill Davis, who got tired of treating patients as they whizzed by on...

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