Direct Primary Care Doctor Doc Randy Answers Your Frequently Asked Questions
Direct primary care (DPC) is a patient-centered type of care that gets rid of intermediaries such as insurance and government programs. These abilities allow patients to be seen for a significantly longer amount of time during each visit. This also allows for direct access to physician services via personal cell phone, email, or text messaging.
Direct primary care doctors provide this type of care due to the belief that it is important to keep the doctor-patient relationship strong in order to provide optimal care. In our opinion, this extra time and access typically means we can provide better and more cost-effective care. This strengthened relationship with our patients allows the direct primary care doctor to focus on wellness and preventive care compared to a practice that has limited time with patients and struggles to provide this kind of one-on-one attention.
Extra time allows for better communication and the ability to get to know the whole patient rather than just their medical condition. This differs from concierge medicine which charges co-pays and also bills your insurance for visits. Concierge practice fees are typically at least 2 to 3 times higher than direct primary care.
Separate coverage is generally needed for this type of emergency care. I will visit you in the hospital for no extra charge and communicate with your doctors to help with your case including planning your follow-up after you are discharged.
DPC doesn’t affect insurance or Medicaid and Medicare coverage. Insurance will continue to cover everything it normally does.
Yes, every patient pays the monthly membership fee whether they have an insurance policy or not. However, I do recommend all patients have some form of insurance coverage, particularly one with a high deductible policy.
As a direct primary care doctor, I take extra time to evaluate your medications to decrease your number and cost of medications to allow for lower out-of-pocket expenses with or without insurance. Also, the ability to closely follow your medical history makes it less likely unnecessary treatment is prescribed.
Since I do not charge for visits or accept co-pays, there is a good chance your membership could lower expenses if you choose a high deductible policy in addition to visiting a DPC clinic. If you already have a high deductible policy, I will also likely decrease your out-of-pocket expenses by keeping you out of the emergency room or urgent care the best I can.
The personal care I provide as a direct primary care doctor allows our clinic to treat conditions that other doctors would ordinarily not have the time to manage. I am also able to monitor a patient’s progress better than a larger clinic, which makes you less likely to have to pay for unnecessary treatment.
Both of these go against my goal to keep you well and out of the hospital or emergency room. If I took insurance, Medicaid, or Medicare as payment, I could not spend enough time with you as I am able to under DPC. I would be forced to see significantly more patients, which means less time per patient.
I do provide house calls at a nominal fee of $30 to people who are homebound or need to be evaluated at home due to a significant illness that has made them unable to travel.
Depending on when you call and the severity of your illness, you will be seen either the same day or the next business day. It is very important for you to call as soon as you are aware of your condition.
If it is a medical emergency that is life-threatening and requires immediate attention, please call 9-1-1. I am not a medical emergency provider.
I am an Internal Medicine doctor, and I’m not trained to treat children. I treat people ages 17 and older. I also do not provide OB/GYN care or surgical care.
For no extra cost, I do provide a few procedures including ear washing/wax removal, incisions, and drainage of small lesions such as boils and abscesses. I also provide basic lab work at no extra charge.
My type of care can work well with employee benefits. My clinic can provide businesses with a lower cost of care and improve the health of their employees. When businesses combine DPC with a self-funded health insurance plan, they can actually save an abundant amount of money.
Since majority of employees' health care needs would be handled without having to file an insurance claim, a large amount of the leftover claim money would go back to the company. Therefore, using DPC and a self-funded plan can save companies money and reduce the need for an expensive insurance plan.
Typically, monthly maybe membership will be charged automatically on a monthly basis via credit card. You may also pay in cash, but this payment method must be paid ahead of time and between visits. I do not accept checks.