Below are some frequently asked questions about Direct Primary Care. We will continue to post more questions and answers as they come up.
Q: DO I STILL NEED INSURANCE AS A DIRECT PRIMARY CARE PATIENT?
A: Yes, you'll still need insurance, though you may be able to reduce the amount you pay.
Your DPC membership is not an insurance plan; you'll still need insurance if you have a major health problem. (But when those problems arise, your DPC doctor will be next to you to guide you through the system and coordinate your care.) That said, you may be able to save money on your insurance! Since all routine care is covered by your membership, you can switch to a "high-deductible" health plan that costs less per month.
Q: HOW AM I BILLED FOR SERVICES?
A: You pay a subscription. The subscription options are monthly, quarterly, or yearly. There is a discount for paying yearly. We keep a credit card on file and it is billed automatically. Any additional feels like labs, medications, images, and treatments are paid for at time of service or will be added to your monthly fee if and when they apply. Its the best model for high-quality care service and support over a long period.
Q: CAN I USE THE DPC FOR ONE MONTH?
A: Unfortunately no, we believe in the value of the doctor/patient relationship model. We prefer a minimum of 3 months membership. We require 30 days notice to cancel any membership. We are able to keep our fees low for our patients, because we focus on getting to know our members and understanding their health needs. Healing takes time and so does establishing a relationship with your doctor.
Q: DO I REALLY HAVE DIRECT ACCESS TO MY PHYSICIAN?
A: As a member you can call, text, even video-call your physician with your medical and health questions. The focus is on the patient-doctor relationship. While all medical emergencies are directed to the emergency room, most urgent care issues can be handled right at the office as well. How cool is that?
Q: IS DIRECT PRIMARY CARE THE SAME AS CONCIERGE MEDICINE?
A: No, while there are similarities with DPC, the two are different in some fundamental ways. For starters, concierge practices often bill your insurance in addition to a monthly fee (though some don't—which makes them DPC practices!). This means they're still a part of the insurance industry's complex reimbursement system, so they have to hire administrators to handle all the paperwork. This gets reflected in your monthly fee. By comparison, DPC memberships cost approximately as much as your cell phone bill.
Let us know what questions you have!
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