Traditionally, primary care health care providers offer routine checkups and preventive care, including immunizations and routine testing or health screening. The focus of a primary care medical professional is on keeping you healthy and preventing illness or chronic health conditions from developing. Additionally, primary care practitioners emphasize patient education, such as good nutritional habits and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Primary care health care providers also diagnose and treat acute conditions and help you manage chronic illnesses like high blood pressure or diabetes. Primary care practitioners take a collaborative, patient-centered approach to treating people of all ages. They emphasize the doctor-patient relationship, and you are considered an integral part of your own health and well-being.
Primary care providers include:
- Family medicine doctors
- Nurse practitioners
What is direct primary care?
Direct primary care is an affordable alternative approach to health care and medical services. Instead of dealing with costly co-pays and insurance claim forms, and waiting to get reimbursed, DPC allows you to pay a monthly, quarterly, or annual fee to the health care provider of your choice. In return for this “membership” or “retainer” fee, you have access to your medical practitioner whenever you need them.
In many cases, DPC practitioners like Maria see fewer patients than traditional providers, so you get more individualized care, longer appointments, and same-day or next-day appointments. Additionally, direct primary care practitioners sometimes offer telemedicine services, meaning you can call to speak with your medical practitioner, or have video-chat appointments to discuss any medical issues or for follow-up care, at no extra charge.
How is a direct primary care practice different?
One of the biggest differences between DPC practices and traditional practices is that in a DPC practice, you’ll have access to your health care provider at your convenience. Visits to the office for medical exams, routine physicals, lab work, or other comprehensive health and wellness services are unlimited, so you don’t have to worry about an expensive co-pay each time you make an appointment. Your practitioner is there when you need them most, so you can maintain good health, get medical attention for an illness, or learn how to better manage a chronic condition.
Hope Wellness Center & Spa offers DPC for its numerous advantages, one of which is spending more time with your health care practitioner at each visit. Maria believes in taking her time with each individual, typically 30-45 minutes per visit, so she can develop a therapeutic nurse-patient relationship to best serve your health care needs.
What if I don’t have health insurance?
Another of the advantages of the DPC model is that you do not necessarily need health insurance for primary care services. The direct primary care model offers high-quality, affordable health care services for all, for a simple monthly or yearly fee, regardless of the type of insurance you have, or whether you have insurance at all.
The DPC model works well with a low cost insurance plan that has a high deductible. This type of plan is highly recommended. You can save your insurance for emergency hospitalizations, visiting specialists, or for services like MRIs or other specific imaging services.