Why a Direct Primary Care Physician Could be the Best New Healthcare Solution in Colorado
With health insurance premiums rising all the time, it’s no surprise that more and more people are looking for an alternative.
Now available in many parts of Colorado, Direct Primary Care is one such alternative. Here’s what you need to know about DPC memberships:
What is a Direct Primary Care Physician?
Direct Primary Care, or DPC, is a subscription-based primary care program. In exchange for a monthly fee, patients can receive unlimited primary care visits with their doctor. This includes routine services like lab tests and checkups, as well as preventive care benefits designed to keep you healthy.
Direct Primary Care is not the same as health insurance. It does not include coverage for ER visits and hospital bills. This means that DPC members have a greater financial risk if they get in an accident. For this reason, most DPC members are advised to pair their membership with a low-cost emergency protection program, like healthcare sharing.
What Are the Benefits of Direct Primary Care?
- DPC is more affordable than health insurance. With some plans costing as little as $100 per month, DPC can save many thousands of dollars over traditional insurance.
- DPC creates better doctor/patient relationships. With more time to spend with their clients, DPC physicians are reporting stronger relationships with their patients, and increased job satisfaction as a result.
- DPC provides unlimited primary care. In exchange for your monthly membership fee, you can see your primary care doctor as much as you need. This makes it easy to stay healthy and monitor potential issues before they get bad.
- DPC visit times are more than twice as long on average: With a traditional primary care provider, an average visit would be between 12 to 15 minutes. Compare that to DPC providers, who have average visit times of 30 to 60 minutes. This is because doctors have less paperwork and data entry to worry about.
The Catch: DPC Memberships Do Not Cover the Cost of Surgery, ER Care, or Hospitalization
It’s important to note that DPC arrangements are not comprehensive insurance plans. This is because they do not cover the costs of hospitalization, ER visits, or medically necessary surgeries.
If you’re enrolled in DPC, you are more exposed to the high costs of emergency care. With uninsured hospital costs as high as $10,000 / day, it’s important to pair your DPC with a solid plan for emergency costs.
How DPC Memberships Can Work with Health Sharing Plans
The main benefit of a Direct Primary Care membership is unlimited access to routine and preventive care. This is a great way to stay healthy, while also catching medical issues before they become an expensive problem.
But DPC memberships won’t cover your ER bills if you get in an accident. Similarly, if you find yourself in the hospital with an unexpected illness, you’re going to be paying those bills out-of-pocket.
- MPB Health offers a Health Sharing Plan that is custom-tailored to work with your existing DPC membership. It’s called MPB Direct, and it includes protection against the large or unexpected costs that aren’t covered by DPC.
- Some MediShare members can use their health sharing program to help pay for the cost of DPC.
When paired together, DPC and Health Sharing create a well-rounded healthcare strategy, while still costing less than many health insurance plans.
Direct Primary Care Memberships in Denver and Beyond: Colorado’s Newest Healthcare Solution
Direct Primary Care is now available to individuals who live in the Denver and Front Range area. DPC is also available to residents of Colorado Springs, Durango, Pueblo, the San Luis Valley, and more. You can visit the Direct Primary Care Coalition to see if there’s a DPC provider in your area.
If you’re interested in enrolling in a health sharing program that works with your DPC, click here to schedule a consultation with your Personal Benefits Manager.
Leslie Jablonski is a Personal Benefits Manager at ColoHealth. Her aim is to help you make smart and informed healthcare coverage decisions that will fit your needs and budget. Read more about Leslie on her Bio page.