Direct Primary Care, or DPC, is a model of healthcare that puts patients first. Direct Primary Care clinics don’t bill insurance, rather they choose to work directly with the patient eliminating virtually all the bureaucracy associated with traditional insurance based health care. By not billing insurance companies doctors save time and money on staff and paperwork. This allows us to focus our time on what's truly important - you!
We direct our attention solely to you. We emphasize building a comprehensive and intimate knowledge of your health. We promise accessibility, convenience, and affordability.
How else is DPC beneficial?
DPC allows physicians the time to listen to an individual's concerns, and address them in a calm, relaxed, and conversational manner. At Modern Internal Medicine this translates into at least three times more face-to-face time with your physician, per visit, as compared to traditional clinics. Additionally, we provide access to labs, imaging, and prescription medications at deep discounts as well as other costs savings along the way.
How does Modern Internal Medicine obtain 50-90% discounts on medications, labs, and imaging tests?
Modern Internal Medicine works with many partners to obtain the lowest prices for our patients. We cross-check the prices to find the lowest ones for each individual patient. In many cases, via partnerships with other similar independent practices, we access exclusive discounts that have been negotiated, and that are not available to the public. Our model works for the benefit of the patient rather than catering to the whims of the insurance company. Even for those individuals who are not subject to insurance deductibles, these prices are often lower than insurance co-pays. If your insurance co-pay is less, you are still able to access these services through your insurance.
What type of insurance do most DPC patients have?
Many will have a typical PPO plan with a high deductible paired with a Health Savings Account. Another option is a Medical Sharing Plan of which there are several. Though technically not insurance, many save money by pairing Medical Sharing Plans with a DPC membership. A small percentage don't have insurance. While we recommend that everyone carry insurance for covering catastrophic and unexpected medical emergencies, we welcome those without insurance to join our practice. Often we can provide discounts on medications, labs, imaging, and procedures that will pay for much if not all of one's membership dues for those carrying high-deductible insurance, Medical Sharing Plans, or no insurance.
What if I am not subject to a deductible for insurance, and I have a reasonable co-pay? Why would I pay twice?
Because you already do, once for the insurance premium and again for the co-pay. The average primary care co-pay is $32 and that yields an average of 8 minutes actually spent with your physician. The alternative would be to spend $96 and see your physician three times to access the same amount of time with your physician as offered in one routine appointment at Modern Internal Medicine. In addition, you would lose more money and time travelling to more frequent, shorter appointments, and you would have to wait in the waiting room multiple times as well. When considering the value of the care and time offered for the annual wellness exam, it exceeds what a typical co-pay provides to an even greater extent.
Moreover, a minimum of 24 minutes consecutively spent for a routine appointment with your physician during a 30 minute block (or 85 minutes offered for the initial wellness evaluation) is much more likely to yield a more in-depth and cohesive experience than for example three 8 minute appointments scattered among three separate 15 minute blocks. Additionally, while our membership contract specifies the number of visits and length of appointments included, we routinely provide some amount of extra care if needed prior to the assessment of additional fees. Finally, if we did require payment for additional appointments beyond those provided by your membership, the cost per appointment of $59 is lower than the $96 referenced above.
Is Modern Internal Medicine guided by holistic principles?
Absolutely. Holistic medicine is a form of healing that considers the whole person including body, mind, spirit, and emotions in the quest for optimal health and wellness. Imbalances in any facet can negatively affect overall health. All physician pursuing their M.D. are taught to apply a holistic approach to treating nearly all medical conditions before (or at least in conjunction with) medications. This includes conditions such as: chronic pain, headaches, trouble sleeping, anxiety, depression, high blood pressure, acid reflux, etc.
In reality, traditional insurance based models do not provide nearly the time necessary during an appointment to practice medicine the way we were taught. This results in giving medications for symptoms without fully exploring the causes. Modern Internal Medicine, through the Direct Primary Care model, provides adequate time to pursue a holistic approach.
A holistic approach provides patients with a list of many different options to alleviate their symptoms. Sometimes it's as simple as implementing one or two changes to improve one's symptoms. These options include lifestyle changes that you can implement independently. We also encourage the pursuit of chiropractic care, acupuncture, massage therapy, and yoga among other therapies.
What type of medications does Modern Internal Medicine prescribe?
We prescribe traditional medications that are FDA approved for most medical conditions. For some conditions such as heart disease or chronic lung disease, often medications are needed lifelong to treat these conditions. For other conditions such as diabetes and hypertension, a holistic approach may reduce or eliminate the number of medications needed. As an example, we may recommend doing A, B, and C and reducing or eliminating X, Y, and Z. We will work with you to achieve those goals. If you are not ready to make changes in your health habits, we will work with you to efficiently manage and prescribe the proper medications.
How does Modern Internal Medicine interact with homeopathic, naturopathic, and other holistic providers?
Modern Internal Medicine's holistic philosophies align well with other holistic practices. We share holistic ideals that consider the whole person, recommend non-pharmaceutical based lifestyle changes (certainly as a first option,) and encourage the use of therapies including chiropractic care, acupuncture, massage therapy, and yoga among other therapies.
While we may recommend pharmaceuticals more often than other holistic providers, we frequently work with patients and providers who prefer homeopathic or naturopathic supplements.
What is modern about Modern Internal Medicine?
It's not about our office decor, fashion sense, or relentless pursuit of the latest tech. It is about applying the latest evidenced based medical care in ways to help you achieve optimal health in a modern society. Our jobs, leisure activities, and access to technology among other factors are forcing us into increasingly sedentary lifestyles. Modern Internal Medicine explores some of these aspects of our everyday lives that affect our health negatively.
What is unique about Modern Internal Medicine?
Modern Internal Medicine implements the Direct Primary Care model (see above,) yet its Modern Internal Medicine's additional Wellness Optimization options for physical fitness, weight loss, and lifestyle and wellness counseling that set us apart as a truly unique and modern practice. Modern Internal Medicine aims to discard the band aid approach of using pills to "manage" disease when possible and instead aims to delay or prevent altogether disease and disability. We will certainly provide the pills necessary to manage the blood pressure, sugar, and lab numbers; however, the Modern mission is to do much more. Instead of simply recommending diet and exercise in a ten second exchange we collaborate with you to formulate detailed exercise and diet plans personalized to your preferences and lifestyle. This results in not only great medical numbers, but also great physical function and vitality for now and the future.
What are the benefits of a small practice?
A small practice allows more direct and timely communication with your physician. The practice is able to be more accountable with fewer employees. You can be sure that your doctor will receive your messages accurately as there are fewer intermediaries involved. We return all messages received between 8a - 3p promptly and usually within 1-2 hours.
Will I benefit from Modern Internal Medicine if I don’t require frequent medical attention?
Modern Internal Medicine reintroduces the concept of Preventative medicine that has been lost in the current traditional healthcare model. We aim to provide proactive care and by doing so limit the amount of reactive care including medications and hospital visits needed. Our practice is devoted to the maintenance of your good health, to the enhancements of your daily experience that only physical well-being can bring. We provide relaxed and conversational visits meant to focus on your needs and goals rather than simply a rush through the physician's checklist.
Does Modern Internal Medicine accept health insurance?
We do not accept health insurance. By not accepting insurance healthcare decisions for our patients are freed from the arbitrary, intrusive decisions of insurance providers. This frees us to provide access to wholesale prices on laboratory tests, imaging, and medications.
As a patient of Modern Internal Medicine, will I still need health insurance?
Yes. We recommend our patients continue a major medical plan with a high deductible and health savings account to ensure financial help should hospitalization or referral to a specialist be necessary.
If I have Medicare, can I still join Modern Internal Medicine?
Yes. You need only sign a one-time waiver declaring that neither you nor your doctor will directly bill Medicare for our services. Medicare will still cover any laboratory testing, imaging, medications prescribed by our office as well as any hospitalizations or specialty care needed.
What happens if I need to go to the hospital or see a specialist?
We will work closely with you using a proactive approach to preventing disease. This will result in a significant reduction in the number of specialists or hospitalizations necessary. In instances where those types of care are required, we will continue to work with your hospitalist during your hospital stay and work closely with your specialists.
Are there any other discounts or ways to make membership more affordable?
Yes. We will even pay you for getting healthier.
1. Any membership paid for on an annual basis will be eligible for a 10% discount, otherwise membership dues are paid monthly.
2. We will provide you with an invoice for each encounter for you to submit to your insurance company for possible reimbursement. This will be at the discretion of the insurance company. Medicare will not reimburse.
3. You may be able to submit some expenses to FSA, HSA, HRA plans. Please discuss with your accountant and plan administrator and see more details below.
Can I contact my physician after hours?
Yes. We provide after hours coverage for emergent issues for a $59 additional fee. We will respond to any non-emergent issue Monday-Friday 8-3p and will always respond promptly ensuring same day/next day appointments. We will routinely offer some evening appointments to improve access to care at no additional fee.
What if I need medical attention while I’m away from home?
The Direct Care Model grants freedom to provide medical care using various media. Many illnesses can be diagnosed and treated with a simple conversation by phone, email, text or webcam. We’ll locate the nearest pharmacy and order the medications most appropriate for your circumstances.
Are my medical records ever 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.
Dr. Henderson will make arrangements with an experienced colleague to provide coverage during medical conferences, vacations, or emergencies.
I’m covered by an HMO. Can I still join Modern Internal Medicine?
Yes. However, if you belong to an HMO, a doctor in that HMO’s network must act as your Primary Care Provider (PCP) for required approvals and referrals. You may still join as long as you understand that for the purposes of your HMO, Modern Internal Medicine cannot act as your PCP, nor will they cover the cost of the professional fee. Further, invoices cannot be submitted to your HMO for reimbursement.
I’m in a PPO. Can I still join the practice?
Yes. While you will be responsible for the annual professional fee, you may be able to submit bills to your insurance company for reimbursement. Since Modern Internal Medicine is not affiliated with any insurance companies, any reimbursement you receive is yours to keep. For insurance purposes Modern Internal Medicine is considered “out of network” physicians. Reimbursement amounts are determined by your particular policy and may be subject to an annual deductible.
May I submit to my insurance provider for reimbursement?
Upon your request we will give you an itemized invoice for all services rendered which represents the reasonable value of the services provided. If your insurance company allows you may then submit a claim to your insurance company for possible reimbursement after you have met any out-of-network deductible. Any reimbursement your insurance company provides to you is yours to keep.
I have a Flexible Spending Account (FSA) or Medical Expense Flexible Savings Account (Medical FSA) through my employer. Can it be used to receive reimbursements?
Please check with your plan's administrator to see if you would be eligible for reimbursements from your office visits.
I have a Health Reimbursement Account (HRA) or Health Savings Account (HSA.) Can it be used to receive reimbursements?
Please check with your plan's administrator to see if you would be eligible for reimbursements from your office visits.
What happens if I move away or have to leave the practice? Can I get a refund?
Yes. If you need to leave the practice for any reason, you will be reimbursed on a pro-rated basis based on whole months remaining in the contract year. If you have already received your Annual Physical Examination for the year, then $400 will be deducted from any pro-rated refund owed to you. Should you leave the practice but decide to rejoin at a later date we cannot guarantee availability and a $99 re-enrollment fee shall apply.
How will I know if Modern Internal Medicine is right for me?
Please contact us and feel free to ask us any questions. Let us show you how we can provide outstanding health care while saving you money now and in the future.
Are there any services that you don't provide?
While we treat pain and psychological conditions, we do so by using typical primary care approaches. In most cases we will be able to treat these conditions satisfactorily. We do not prescribe controlled substances including opioids, stimulants, and benzodiazepines; however, if your condition is severe we will help with referrals to pain management specialists or psychiatrists. Additionally, we do not provide prenatal or obstetric care though we can provide referrals.