Southeast Missouri — A Hub for Health Care

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Friday, June 29, 2018

Health care is changing in our region.

There is a growing movement in America — practices everywhere are working to improve our health care system. We are one of those practices.

We are EBO MD.

Because our current, ever-changing health care system too often jeopardizes our ability to do what’s best for patients, we decided to simplify the process by cutting out the middlemen. Our physicians and practitioners spend more time with our patients and deliver improved care. Instead of endless insurance hoops and questionable markups, wouldn’t it be better to just do business with your doctor directly?

In a word, absolutely.

EBO MD is a direct primary care practice.

Our history is part of Cape Girardeau’s legacy as a regional hub for health care. Established as Girardeau Park Family Medicine (precursor to Cape Family Practice) by Dr. Thomas Sparkman, MD in 1963, EBO MD manages one of Cape Girardeau’s oldest family health care practices, celebrating 55 years in continuous operation this year.

In April 2016, Dr. Michael Wulfer’s direct primary care clinic, IndependentMD was purchased. Most recently, we’ve added Anthony Keele, MD; Shahzaib Anwar, MD and Mike Stevenson, DO.

Our clinic system provides medical services to a limited number of patients who pay a monthly fee. Because we see fewer patients, we are able to provide you the level of personal care you deserve.

Plus, most everything we do in the office is covered 100 percent by your membership fee — no copay, no deductible, no hoops.


Cape Girardeau is a regional health care hub, and EBO MD works at their location on Mount Auburn Road to ensure residents have options that reduce health care costs. In May 2017, they expanded to a new location in Jackson, to meet the needs of patients and employers in the outlying communities of Southeast Missouri.

“It really goes hand-in-hand with our philosophy of ‘meeting the patients where they are,’ whether it be geographically or where they might be on their personal health care journey,” says Tony Thompson, CEO of EBO MD.

In addition to Dr. Anthony Keele and Dr. Shahzaib Anwar, who are anchor providers at the Cape Girardeau EBO MD location, Dr. Mike Stevenson, DO, joined the EBO MD team at the Jackson location in May. Stevenson previously practiced for 20 years as a family practitioner in Poplar Bluff. He is also a retired colonel in the Missouri National Guard, and served more than 13 tours as a field surgeon in the Middle East.

Stevenson made the move to EBO MD — a decision that has been in the works for the past couple of years — so he could more closely align his philosophy of medicine with his practice of it. Stevenson and his wife Rhonda also were excited to move to Jackson for the abundance of opportunities the community provides for both children and adults.

Stevenson’s philosophy of medicine is based on family.

“Essentially, the family practice is almost a dying art,” he says. “What I would like to do is put the family back into family practice. It’s all interrelated in a family, and we’ve lost that in this country. People think health care can be cookbooked, but it can’t. That’s the art of the practice of medicine.”

He says this art includes taking time to talk with patients and examine them, asking questions about their life that could help diagnosis a medical problem and understanding their family’s medical history. This is accomplished through the 30-minute appointment slots EBO MD schedules for patients to be face-to-face with their doctor.

This longer appointment leads to better outcomes, too: EBO MD patients have fewer ER visits than patients from other practices, Stevenson says.

“We have time to sit down, ask those questions, dig into the problem of what’s going on and sort it out,” Stevenson says. “Patients aren’t pushed through like livestock. I want to get health care back to being family practice, not an assembly line.”

Ultimately, it is the opportunity to best serve the patient that drew Stevenson to EBO MD.

“I’m accountable to the patient, not to an insurance company or a hospital or anyone else, so I can give a recommendation that I think is in the patient’s best interest — not in an insurance company’s best interest,” Stevenson says. “It’s a better model for all parties concerned.”