Frequently Asked Questions
What is this clinic all about?
My clinic is designed to offer family practice in a way that is personal, comprehensive, immediate, and affordable.
What is the direct primary care model?
Direct primary care is an innovative model designed to take medical care back for the patient. Instead of the usual model in which the doctor contracts with a patient’s insurance company (and is therefore beholden to all of its nonsensical and burdensome policies) I will contract directly with you, the patient. In that case, you and I will have the time and freedom to choose the right treatment plan without outside interference. For a modest monthly membership fee I will be here for you around the clock and take care of you in and out of the office. You would still use your medical insurance for any care needed outside this clinic (for specialist care, out of the office lab tests and imaging studies, ER visits, surgeries, etc) but happily your insurance is not needed in my clinic.
What is the biggest difference between this clinic and traditional medical clinics?
Because I no longer have to endure insurance hassles, and due to the smaller more intimate nature of my clinic, I am able to give you the time and good care you deserve. The doctor-patient relationship is restored as the most important part of the practice of medicine. By contracting with you, rather than with your insurance company, I am free to provide the best care for you.
What if I don’t go to the doctor very often? Does this model make sense for me?
Certainly! Placing a high value on good health is important at any age and staying well for a lifetime is a benefit of customized care. Even the ‘young and healthy’ benefit greatly from a trusted and knowledgeable personal physician. It is reassuring to know that I am on notice and ready to be here for you whenever you might need me (and even wherever you might be in the world!). Everyone deserves the time and attention this type of model is able to deliver, no matter how infrequently it may be needed.
Does your clinic accept my insurance?
I know it sounds strange to say, but happily I can tell you that I do not accept your insurance. The good news is that I do not accept it because you won’t ever need to use it in my clinic. I contract directly with you for a modest monthly membership fee to provide for all of your clinic care instead of billing your insurance. I am glad you have insurance to cover all the other parts of healthcare that you may need outside of my office, but thankfully you never need to use it here, because this model of care is so much simpler than what we are used to in the complex modern medical system, it is worth repeating that neither you, nor your insurance (nor anyone else) will ever be billed from my clinic outside the monthly membership fee. Since no one is billed at all ever for services provided in my clinic, you will not need to bill your insurance yourself, get reimbursed, or in any other way have a hassle for payment. When you pay your membership fee that is all there is to it! And remember that because I do not contract with or bill your insurance for my services, I am not beholden to its rules and restrictions on how I deliver the best possible care to you. I can now spend more time with you rather than filling out the mounds of nonsensical paperwork I once was forced to do for them.
What happens if I have to see another doctor?
The extended office visits and around the clock access in this clinic allows for proactive care that reduces the likelihood that you will need to see other doctors or have hospital visits. Of course, there will be times when we will need the advice and care of my trusted colleagues in the community. You would then use your health insurance for those types of visits, tests, hospitalizations, and surgeries as per usual. I will be pleased to work closely with those colleagues during your care outside my clinic, if you are in the hospital, or recovering from surgery.
Is my membership with you tax deductible, and/or can I use an HSA account?
Sadly I cannot definitively say “yes” at this time. There are many proponents working to designate your monthly membership payment as a “medical expense” and as that happens it will become tax deductible/HSA applicable. Until that expected time comes, it is strongly advised that you get the opinion of your accountant/tax consultant about this issue.
What about my children in this plan?
In my clinic, children can become patients for a small additional monthly fee, as long as at least one parent is enrolled.
How do I get ahold of you?
You will have my cell phone number, office number, and email (with your permission) and you can feel free to call, text, or email anytime from anywhere in the world. Since I know that illness and injury have no respect for regular office hours, you are not limited by those constraints in my practice. Reach out to me whenever you need me. We really will be here for you!
Can I reach you for care if I am out of town?
Absolutely! It is very likely with the combination of our established close relationship and modern technology that I can help diagnose and treat many conditions from afar. I can also help you find a nearby pharmacy and call in needed medications if applicable. In the event your condition requires an immediate in-person assessment for safety, I will work to help you find a resource near your location.
What if I have a true medical emergency?
As always in a true emergency, you will want to call 911. If you are not having a life or death emergency but need urgent advice, please never hesitate to call me on my cell phone at any time.
What about my medical records?
We have electronic medical records designed for this type of practice. Rest assured that the security and privacy standards are exceptional. Also, because I do not contract at all with the government or insurance companies, I am not obligated to provide your records to them. I would only send your medical records to them at your written request.
What if I am a member and I need to leave your practice?
We are confident that you and your family will love being a part of our clinic. Nonetheless, if circumstances ever change, rest assured that you are not trapped into any contractual obligations. If you have chosen to pay quarterly or annually rather than monthly, your unused membership fees will be prorated and refunded to you. We will also stand by to send your medical records free of charge to your new doctor immediately upon your written request.
Can I schedule a tour, or a ‘meet and greet’ to see if your clinic is right for me and my family?
Of course! Please contact us to schedule a free consultation and/or clinic tour so you can see if our style of healthcare is a good fit for you.
Is this type of care too good to be true?
It really isn’t. It is just so much more than we have been conditioned to accept lately in American healthcare. How would it feel if . . .
more often than not, your doctor answered when you called the clinic
you got immediate feedback from your calls, your test results, or your office visit
you knew exactly how much your in-clinic primary care would cost each year
you could see your doctor and NOT see bills months later when an insurance company was done processing them
you could text your doctor (a picture of the rash that just popped up while you were in Texas, even!) for advice and treatment
you had an hour or more to discuss your concerns, illness, wellness, etc during an office visit
you had same day appointment options
you had after hours access always
you had the same doctor for every visit who knew you well