You Ask — We Answer
WHAT IS DIRECT PRIMARY CARE?
Direct primary care (DPC) is a subset model of the retainer-based practice framework for primary care practices. There is not a single DPC practice model; rather the model represents a broad array of practice arrangements that share a common set of characteristics. Perhaps the defining characteristic of DPC practices is that they offer patients the full range of comprehensive primary services, including routine care, regular checkups, preventive care, and care coordination in exchange for a flat, recurring retainer fee that is typically billed to patients on a monthly basis. DPC practices are distinguished from other retainer-based care models, such as concierge care, by lower retainer fees, which cover at least a portion of primary care services provided in the DPC practice.
HOW DOES DIRECT PRIMARY CARE DIFFER FROM TRADITIONAL PRIMARY CARE?
I can handle simple problems without an office visit.
This probably sounds crazy, but it’s true. Currently, the only way a physician can get paid by insurance and Medicare/Medicaid is to see patients in the office, which more often than not means a large chunk of your valuable time. But often the problem is simple and could be handled in a few minutes with direct communication. I won’t be forced to see a high number of patients to pay my overhead, and will therefore be available to answer you directly when you need me, anytime by phone, secure text, and secure email.
WHAT DOES THE MONTHLY FEE COVER?
Unlimited office visits, phone, email, or virtual visits.
In office lab such as urinalysis, strep screens, flu tests, and pregnancy tests.
HOW MANY PATIENTS DO YOU PLAN TO HAVE?
Starting January 1st, I’ll be enrolling up to 500 patients, please do not wait until you need care to attempt to sign up, or I may not be accepting anymore patients at that time.
AS YOUR PATIENT, DO I STILL NEED HEALTH INSURANCE?
I recommend you continue to have health insurance to cover health care costs beyond the services of my practice such as specialist care, hospitalization, radiological imaging and some labs.
The most cost-effective insurance to pair with direct primary care would be a high deductible/HSA plan. Check out this link on the topic of primary care without health insurance.
I DON'T SEE THE DOCTOR OFTEN, WHY SHOULD I JOIN?
We believe that having a trusting relationship with your primary doctor is important, even if you are healthy. We offer health coaching to help you continue to improve your health. Should you ever get sick, we will be there to guide you.
Your privacy is important to us. Health and Human Services says, “A covered entity must prominently post and make available its notice on any web site it maintains that provides information about its customer services or benefits.” https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/privacy/guidance/model-notices-privacy-practices/index.html