You've got questions about DPC. We've got answers!
1. What is Direct Primary Care?
Direct Primary Care is a model of medicine that allows doctors to provide exceptional primary care through accessibility. DPC is a nation-wide movement of Primary Care doctors who have disembarked from the insurance companies and their assembly-line model of medicine in favor of re-establishing the patient-doctor relationship. It is a form of concierge medicine that is designed to be affordable for patients who both have and do not have insurance. Wishing Wellness Direct Primary Care operates on a monthly membership fee, much like a gym, which allows patients to receive unlimited office visits, same day or next day acute visit and what we call technology visits (email, cell phone/text messages, video calls, etc.).
2. Why is a Direct Primary Care practice a better option?
Many patients today and in the near future will end up having high deductible plans, where the insurance won’t cover the first $2,000-$5,000 that they spend anyway. At Wishing Wellness we strive to serve our patients not only through prevention but through peace of mind. We are accessible to our patients when our patients need us the most. Using a DPC membership model, patients can maximize the amount of healthcare they get and minimize their cost. In this new model of care, we work with our patients directly to address issues when they come up as well as help set up lifestyle goals. We do not charge co-pays. Any procedures we can do in our office like: EKG, PFT’s, biopsies, joint injections are included without additional charge.
3. Is this like Concierge?
This is similar to concierge practices in that your doctor is available to you when you need them. The main difference is that Concierge doctors still bill insurance, therefore, they are required to share patient information in order to collect a copayment, coinsurance, deductibles, and any non-covered service amounts as required by the health insurance contract. We do not bill insurance and therefore are not required to share your personal information with insurance companies.
4. Does Wishing Wellness accept health insurance?
We do not bill any insurance. Our patients are able to retain our services through a monthly fee. For patients that have health insurance we work with them to refer medication and physician referrals with those covered by their health insurance. Patients may continue to use their health insurance and use our services to oversee your health care and preventative health.
5. As a patient of Wishing Wellness, will I still need health insurance?
Although health insurance is NOT necessary for membership, it is advised. We do encourage patients to maintain some level of health insurance to help cover the costs of medical care that you receive from medical providers/facilities outside of our practice. Insurance will help cover costs associated with, but not limited to, prescription medications, labs, imaging studies (X-rays, CT scans, MRI's, etc.), specialist consultations, hospitalizations, and surgeries. If you do not have insurance we can still work with you to find the most affordable options for medications, imaging and testing.
6. Can my insurance still be used in your office?
No. We are an insurance-free medical practice which means that we do not accept insurance. This does NOT mean, however, that patients with insurance cannot become members in our practice.
Again, payment for services provided through our office will be covered by the membership fee.
Because we do not contract with any insurance companies, we do advise you to review your insurance contract regarding "Out-of-Network" benefits for possible reimbursement of services you receive from us.
7. Are the membership fees reimbursable by my HSA/FSA?
You may want to check with your human resources department regarding the use of Health Savings Accounts (HSA’s) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA’s) as possible payment options for your annual membership. If you are unable to use these funds to pay for the annual membership fee directly, there is a good chance that you can still use your HSA/FSA as reimbursement for certain services provided through our office.
8. Will I still benefit from a Direct Primary Care practice even if I don’t require frequent medical attention?
We love that question and we hear it often! Everyone benefits from medical care personalized directly for them. Our practice is committed to preventative health maintenance which is a long-term investment in you! Physicals, i.e., preventative health visits, are not just routine; they are opportunities for early disease detection, much like a state inspection for your car. Have questions about exercise, health, nutrition, vitamins? Talk to your doctor about them. Set up a visit or a phone call. Every appointment, regardless of the reason, will give us the opportunity to get to know you better and to build a long-standing relationship over time. As a result, individual care plans can be developed that are tailored to the individual needs of each patient.
9. What happens if I need to go to the hospital or see a specialist?
Our patients, if hospitalized, are seen by a hospitalist. Our team communicates with hospitalists to make sure our patients are getting the best care possible. We are available to continue to be a source of trusted medical care and our patients will not be alone. Your care team can still visit you in the hospital and we will continue to coordinate the care you are getting by keeping in close contact with the hospitalist and specialists taking care of you. We will still refer patients to specialists as necessary and communicate with them directly so that they understand exactly what is expected from them, this will avoid any unnecessary testing or procedures.
10. Can I contact my physician after hours? How?
Of course you can! We strive to always be accessible. We understand that illness and injury do not always occur during office hours; therefore, you may call us at any time. You can contact us via email, cell phone, text message. We want to be accessible to you! Please be advised that we are not able to provide 24h emergency care and in case of emergency please call 911
11. What if I need medical attention while I’m away from home?
Contact us! We can determine the most effective means of communication to determine the best approach to handle your specific situation. Again, we can connect via email, cell phone, text message, Skype, FaceTime, Facebook, etc. We’ll help you find the nearest pharmacy and prescribe the medications you need.
12. Are my medical records ever shared with insurance carriers or pharmaceutical companies?
13. How will I know if the doctor at Wishing Wellness is the right fit for me?
Since you are on our website, you are on the right track already! If you like what you have read so far, we invite you to call us at the office so that we can personally answer your questions. Also, please check out our Facebook page. There are a lot of great topics that may interest you and help aid you in your decision making.
14. How do I join if the practice is full?
In order to provide the highest possible level of personalized, quality care to patients who choose our practice, we must limit membership. As a result, once our practice membership is full, a waiting list will be established. As openings become available, you will be contacted by a member of our team regarding membership.
15. What costs are involved in becoming a patient?
A membership fee, paid monthly or paid in full with a discount, is all that is required. This will cover costs of providing care to you and your family throughout the year. We will not charge or collect any copayments/coinsurance/deductibles for visits.
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