Restoring simplicity and freedom to medicine. That's the short version of what Dr. Joseph Sheppard, DO offers through his direct care clinic, Free Market Physician located at 317 South Wood Street in Neosho.

Restoring simplicity and freedom to medicine. That's the short version of what Dr. Joseph Sheppard, DO offers through his direct care clinic, Free Market Physician located at 317 South Wood Street in  Neosho.
Free Market Physician is the Neosho Area Chamber of Commerce Business/Employer of the Month for July.  
"We received several nominations," Ashley Siler, Chamber Event Coordinator said at the event honoring Dr. Sheppard Tuesday morning at the Free Market Physician clinic.
Sheppard received recognition from the Chamber of Commerce, Newton County and the City of Neosho.
"It's a nice thing,"  Sheppard said, commenting on being named Business/Employer of the Month. "I haven't really thought of myself as an employer but we do have five employees."
He explained what the Free Market Physician is and why it's different from traditional medicine.
"We're insurance free," he said. "We charge a minimum fee for labs and meds. The whole purpose is to make health care affordable. It has worked out really well for me and for the community. We had our third anniversary (of being in Neosho) last week."
The clinic is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday. One of the major differences is that it's insurance free. Patients enroll in a plan with a monthly fee which allows them as many office visits as necessary.  Members can call, email or text Dr. Sheppard 24/7, another change from what most physicians are able to offer.  "As much as doctors want to work for the patient," Sheppard said. "They work for the insurance company. Insurance makes health care more expensive. I don't think I'm better than any other physician but this (Free Market Physician) gives me time to get to know and serve them. Our mission is making health care affordable."
An After Hours Clinic is also offered from 4-7 p.m. on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. "Right now, we're the only after hours urgent care clinic in Neosho," Sheppard said.
The After Hours clinic is open to both enrolled patients and walk-ins.  It's designed to treat minor illnesses and injuries such as sore throats, fevers, coughs, colds, muscle strains and sprains, asthma exacerbations, and minor lacerations (cuts). Testing is also or urinalysis, RSV, influenza, and strep throat.
Asked if he believes this type clinic will be more common in the future, Sheppard said, "Absolutely, I would hope so but will it is the question."
Enrollment is limited in order to be able to provide same day office visits and personalized care.  Details about how to enroll can be found on the Free Market Physician website at www.freemarketphysician.com.  They also have a Facebook page.  The clinic is located on South Wood Street, just behind the Post Office and east of Clark Funeral Home.
Dr. Sheppard and his wife, Allison, have five children, four boys and one daughter, and make their home in Neosho.