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CLARK FAMILY MEDICINE

what is it?

Clark Family Medicine is excited to provide Direct Primary Care to the Pocatello, Idaho area. The purpose of our practice is to be there for patients when they are sick, but also to improve their health and well-being long-term.

 

Direct Primary Care is a pattern of family health care that is immediate, thorough, transparent, specific, affordable, and very, very personal.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Direct Primary Care is a new, affordable model of healthcare designed to prioritize better patient relationships and well-being.

WHAT IS DIRECT PRIMARY CARE?

  • Direct Primary Care is a newer model of healthcare where patients have direct access to their primary care physician, allowing for a more personal relationship. Direct Primary Care has no barriers to patient care, like insurance/Medicare, or even accessing the doctor. The doctor only takes a limited number of patients and therefore will have more time to spend with patients compared with a traditional practice. Patients will pay a monthly membership fee; your insurance or Medicare plan will not be billed, so there will be no co-pays. The membership fee includes the ability for longer appointments, significant decreased wait times to get into my schedule, telemedicine appointments, texting and emailing.

  • Patients can still use their insurance or Medicare plan to help pay for labs, imaging tests, and to see specialty doctors, but it won’t be needed to see their Direct Primary Care doctor.

  • I will be negotiating rates with labs and (hopefully) imaging companies so members can get a full panel of blood work for a significant savings.

  • It is still recommended to have a high deductible health plan in case they need to go to the hospital.

WHY DID YOU LEAVE YOUR PREVIOUS PRACTICE?

  • In the traditional, insurance-based primary care clinic, doctors are financially incentivized to see more people and spend less time. This naturally decreases the doctor / patient relationship. It’s the reason you may have had a doctor’s visit that lasted a few minutes long while the doctor stares at the computer, not you. It’s not their fault, the system mandates it. That same healthcare system is pleading for a new, efficient way to keep patients happy and healthy.

WHAT DOES MY MONTHLY MEMBERSHIP FEE COVER?

  • Monthly membership fees cover needed office visits without a copay, in-house labs as they become available (e.g., urine testing, strep/flu testing, injections, manipulation, EKG, sutures). I will make myself available for urgent phone calls or texts, as best as possible. 

WHAT SERVICES DO YOU PROVIDE AS A FAMILY MEDICINE DOCTOR?

  • I love caring for patients of all ages and in all stages! I offer full spectrum family medicine except obstetrics. I love the variety that my patients bring me! 

WHAT HAPPENS IF I NEED TO GO TO THE HOSPITAL OR SEE A SPECIALIST?

  • In providing superb care with unprecedented sorts of access, I seek to prevent or reduce hospitalizations and specialty referrals. In instances where those types of care are required, I will be available to coordinate your care with the hospital or specialist. In some cases, depending on the level of care and the sorts of expertise required, I may rely on those specialized caregivers to manage your treatment.

WHAT IF I ONLY WANT TO BE SEEN FOR A ONE-TIME VISIT?

  • The purpose of my practice is to be there for patients when they are sick, but also to help them be well for the long term. The membership gives me the opportunity to take calls and emails and spend time with my patients. It gives the patient the incentive to reach out early when they have a problem and it gives the doctor the incentive, not just to get the patient into the clinic, but to help them be healthy. 

IS DIRECT PRIMARY CARE THE SAME AS CONCIERGE MEDICINE?

  • The Direct Primary Care model may seem similar to a concierge practice and it is in some ways (e.g., direct access to the doctor), but the differences are that with a concierge practice, the membership fees are much higher and they charge your insurance or Medicare plan each time you see the doctor. Direct primary care memberships fees are less than many gym memberships.

WHY CHOOSE DIRECT PRIMARY CARE?

  • You will have direct access to your physician through email, text, phone. 

  • Same and next day appointments available for urgent needs and significant decrease in wait times for non-urgent appointments.

  • You will receive better care because I am able to spend more time with you.

  • By having direct access to me, you can expect quick responses on your questions and health concerns that otherwise could take days to receive a response from a traditional primary care clinic.

  • You will be called back in a timely manner.

  • I really think you will like this model as it will allow for a more personal physician-patient relationship focused on you obtaining your best health.

ARE MY MEDICAL RECORDS SHARED WITH INSURANCE CARRIERS OR PHARMACEUTICAL COMPANIES?

  • We maintain scrupulous standards of privacy. We are never obligated to provide any third party with a copy of your records, unless you specifically ask that we do so.

AS A PATIENT, WILL I STILL NEED INSURANCE?

  • Yes. I aim to provide the majority of the care you will need, but medical conditions and illnesses can arise that require specialty care, hospitalization or surgery. Direct Primary Care is not intended to take the place of health insurance.

DOES CLARK FAMILY MEDICINE ACCEPT HEALTH INSURANCE?

  • No, I do not accept or bill health insurance. In the DPC model, I will contract directly with the patient, not an insurance company, to provide quality care. By eliminating the restrictions and frustrations associated with health insurance, I can keep costs low and spend as much time as needed with my patients. However, you can still use your insurance for other needs such as medications, imaging, or specialist/hospital visits.

IF I HAVE MEDICARE, CAN I STILL JOIN CLARK FAMILY MEDICINE?

  • In order to contract with any patient with Medicare, it requires me to “opt out” of Medicare. This decision takes away any other form of me to work outside my clinic as I continue to grow. In order for me to make that decision, I am asking for pre-enrollments so that I can determine the amount of patients that have Medicare that have interest in joining the practice. This will help me be confident in that decision.

CAN CHILDREN BECOME MEMBERS OF CLARK FAMILY MEDICINE?

  • Yes. We are happy to accept the children (birth to 20 years of age) of our enrolled clients. I still have privileges at PMC to see your newborn as part of the membership.

  • At this time, I am not able to provide routine vaccinations for young children, but I hope to be able to quickly incorporate that into my practice and am happy to coordinate the care needed for any vaccines. 

DO YOU CURRENTLY OFFER AESTHETICS?

  • Yes! I am currently offering botox, xeomin, and an array of fillers for an additional fee. You do not have to be a member to see me for aesthetics only but members of the practice will receive discounted aesthetic services.

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