FAQ

Take a moment to explore the benefits of Essential DPC, so you can decide whether or not we are the right choice for you.


What is Direct Primary Care?

Direct Primary Care (DPC) is an alternative to conventional insurance-based primary care. Rather than going through all the hassles of insurance claims and prior authorizations, we establish direct relationships with our patients through an affordable monthly membership fee. Come in as often as necessary; there is no copayment per visit. We also provide transparency for any additional costs that are not included in your monthly membership (eg., labs, imaging, medications, certain procedures such as OMT). We promise accessibility, affordability and high quality care.

What does the monthly membership include?

The monthly membership includes excellent primary care and open access to our services. You'll be able to use whatever form of communication you desire, whether it be a face-to-face visit, a phone call, a text message, or even a video chat to access your family doctor. You can schedule your annual wellness exam, receive basic office procedures, and optimize your health while under our care. Moreover, we do our best to negotiate and find low-cost alternatives to imaging, medical equipment, medications and labs not only to lower your out of pocket expenses but to support small businesses and drive an understanding of health-care pricing.

Is there a sign-up fee to join?

There is no sign-up fee. Just sign-up for the monthly membership, enroll in the easy monthly, quarterly, semi-annual, or annual payment system and start accessing great care. It’s that simple. We do require a 3-month minimum membership for new patients.

Do you see patients of all ages?

Yes! As Family Medicine doctors, we provide care for patients of all ages and stages from children to grandparents.

Will I still benefit from a Direct Primary Care practice even if I don’t require frequent medical attention?

Absolutely! One of the best aspects of a DPC clinic is the opportunity for prevention. Our goal is to prevent disease rather than react to disease. Screening and prevention are key components to long, healthy and vibrant lives. We can keep your health on track through lifestyle changes, specifically targeting diet, exercise, sleep hygiene and stress management. It is important to be proactive and create plans for staying healthy. Our members benefit from attentive care tailored to them.

What if I decide to cancel my membership?

We understand that your needs may change, and we want to help you through whatever transitions you're making. If you need to cancel after the initial 3 months, we would appreciate a 30 day notice.

Do you accept health insurance?

No, thankfully, we don't accept or bill health insurance at Essential DPC. We forgo insurance payments in order to save our patients from the arbitrary, intrusive decisions that inevitably follow when dealing with third-party payors (insurers). Furthermore, our direct care model frees us from the typical contractual agreements that prevent physicians in traditional practice from offering wholesale prices on medication, laboratory tests and imaging.

Do I still need health insurance once I sign up with Essential DPC?

Yes. We suggest you opt for a lower-cost, higher-deductible plan that would still offer you coverage but would lower your monthly premium. Direct primary care is not health insurance. What we offer at Essential DPC is medical care, with an emphasis on care. There are certain types of services we cannot provide for you, such as major surgeries, hospital stays, labor & delivery, or specialized care such as cancer treatment, and you would still need insurance to cover these situations. DPC coupled with a high deductible / catastrophic medical insurance plan or health sharing plan is becoming a widespread solution to increasing deductibles, out of pocket expenses and overuse in Urgent and Emergent Care. We take care of your primary care needs and let the higher deductible plans take care of the rest.

If I have Medicare, can I still join Essential DPC?

Yes. You only need to sign a biennial waiver declaring that neither you nor your doctor will directly bill Medicare for our services. Medicare will still cover any laboratory testing, imaging, medications, or hospitalizations ordered by our office.

How much does Essential DPC cost?

We use a membership model for healthcare. We provide Osteopathic Manipulative Therapy (OMT) as an additional service that you pay per treatment. View more information on our Pricing page.

What is a D.O.? What is OMT?

A D.O. is a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, a fully-licensed physician who is able to practice in all specialties of medicine – just like an M.D. In addition, we receive specialized training in the musculoskeletal system so that we can diagnose and treat many common somatic dysfunction with the use of OMT, or osteopathic manipulative therapy. We also receive training that focuses on prevention and holistic patient care, taking into account how lifestyle and environment can impact disease. View more information on our OMT page.

What is the waiting time like in your office?

Little to no wait time is the goal. We realize that your time is valuable and want to respect that as much as possible. We also provide same-day or next-day appointments for our members so that you can have the peace of mind that you'll be seen when you need it.

What is parking like?

There is plenty of parking at our office space, including disabled parking.

What if I need to see a specialist or go to the hospital?

First, we use a wide variety of tools to help you with any diagnosis. As Family Medicine physicians, we are trained broadly to manage a multitude of diagnoses. The biggest tool that we have is time - time to read and understand your diagnosis and do our best work for you. We can take care of more than 80% of what you may need, and we deliver an excellent, hassle-free healthcare experience for you. In providing superb care with unprecedented access, we seek to prevent or reduce specialty referrals and hospitalizations. In instances requiring specialty services outside the scope of primary care, we can help you arrange direct care through local specialists or make referrals to utilize your insurance. This gives additional flexibility to meet your medical needs. We do encourage you to carry a lower-cost, high-deductible health insurance plan for these kinds of needs, as we are not considered a health insurance plan.

Do you prescribe opiates or narcotics?

We have a policy of not prescribing opiate or other controlled medications for chronic pain management, even if another doctor has prescribed them for you before. We believe there are many other ways to treat chronic pain and are happy to work with you to figure out the best options for you.


Still have questions? Send us an email or call us so we may further assist you!