Frequently Asked Questions About Direct Primary Care
Pure Family Medicine and Dr. Rebecca Bub are proud to bring Direct Primary Care, a unique model of health care, to southwest Littleton, Colorado. Please don't hesitate to contact our practice if you have any questions!
Direct Primary Care Questions
What is Direct Primary Care?
- Direct Primary Care (DPC) is a new model for delivering primary care in west Denver, that gives patients high quality healthcare at a simple, transparent monthly cost. Members of a direct care practice get direct access to their personal doctor when they need it, without being rushed. No insurance is required or accepted, and physicians are accountable to their patients only, not a medical corporation or insurance company. All visits and most procedures are included in the monthly membership fee, with no co-pay. Patients also get transparent, wholesale cost pricing on labs and medications. Direct Primary Care in Littleton allows for closer physician-patient relationships and aims to make healthcare simple and affordable.
Is Direct Primary Care the same as concierge medicine?
- No, although concierge medicine and direct primary care have similar roots, they are different in many ways. Concierge prices are higher and typically cost prohibitive for many patients, and unlike direct primary care concierge doctors in Denver charge patients twice by also billing their health insurance. With direct primary care, our fees are lower as we try to be accessible to all families, while still providing excellent care. Many concierge doctors do house calls and are available to see their patients 24/7. With direct primary care patients can communicate with their family medicine doctor around the clock for urgent medical issues, but medical care is typically restricted to office hours.
I'm a healthy person and only see my doctor once a year for a physical, why should I join a direct primary care practice?
- Traditional health care focuses on treating patients when they’re sick, because most patients don't want to see their family doctor when they're healthy if they have to pay every time they go in. The direct care membership model of Pure Family Medicine let’s us focus on keeping you healthy. Imagine calling or visiting your family physician to talk about stress reduction, healthy eating, or proper sleep habits. These are the major things that will keep you healthy, and it’s a shame that our current medical system doesn’t prioritize them more.
- If you do become ill, you won’t have to wait a week to be seen, or worse, be forced to visit an urgent care in Littleton or an ER.
- If you do ever need a diagnostic test, the cost savings from a test such as an MRI can be enough to pay for a year’s membership in a direct primary care practice.
I have a good insurance plan, how is paying for membership in a direct care practice going to save me money?
- Take a look at how much money you spend on healthcare each year. Add up your monthly premiums (don’t forget to look at what is withheld from your paycheck), your co-pays for office visits, any medications you purchased throughout the year, and the cost of any diagnostics you may have needed.
- The cost of a membership in Pure Family Medicine for a family of four is $275 per month, or $3,300 in a year. As a member, there are no out of pocket costs for almost everything we do in the office, and you can anticipate your other costs of medications and diagnostics to plummet by around 85%. Even if you are unable to change your insurance plan, your out of pocket costs should drop by over $3,300. If you can change your insurance plan, the savings are even greater. Even if you were to break even in costs, you will be getting personalized care from a physician you have a strong relationship with, direct access to your physician, and a better healthcare experience!
- * Source: 2018 Millman Medical Index
Do I still need health insurance if I am a member of Pure Family Medicine?
- As membership in Pure Family Medicine is not health insurance, we recommend having health insurance for major medical issues such as hospitalization or surgery, as well as specialist care.
- Many people continue to use their existing insurance, and others find that a wrap-around or catastrophic health insurance plan meets their needs better. These plans typically have low monthly premiums, high deductibles, but are a safety net should you have a serious medical issue. Medical cost sharing and health sharing ministries are also a good option, below are some options our patients have used in the past:
- Sedera Health - medical cost sharing
- Liberty Healthshare
- Christian Healthcare Ministries
- Samaritin Ministries
How does health insurance work in a direct primary care practice?
- We do not accept health insurance of any kind, and will not bill health insurance for any services we provide. We have decided to go this route to allow more time for our patients, and to remove the barriers to providing quality and affordable healthcare imposed by insurance companies on patients and doctors. Patients can still use their existing health insurance for medication, outside labs, diagnostics, and vaccines. Many people prefer to use the negotiated discounts we have obtained on these services instead of using their health insurance.
Do you accept Medicaid patients?
- Unfortunately, Colorado law dictates that we are unable to see any Medicaid patient.
Will Medicare cover my membership in Pure Family Medicine?
- We do see Medicare patients, however we are unable to bill Medicare for your membership or any of our services.
- You will still be able to use Medicare for traditional labwork, imaging, and referrals.
What if I need to cancel my membership?
- We want you to be thrilled with being a member of Pure Family Medicine. If you are not, you can cancel at any time, there are no contract lock-in periods.
- We do have restrictions on rejoining our practice after leaving, please see our member agreement for details.
Can I be seen at Pure Family Medicine if I am not a member?
- Yes. Although the best health care comes from an ongoing and unrestricted relationship with your west Denver family doctor, we realize that a Direct Primary Care membership is not for everyone. Our cash pay doctors fees (Pay as You Go pricing) allows patients to be seen without committing to a membership. Most member benefits such as at-cost pricing, email and texting with your doctor, and same and next days appointments are not available for patients choosing to Pay as You Go. Availability of these appointments is limited so that we can reserve time for our Direct Primary Care Members. Learn more about Pay as You Go here.
How do I join Pure Family Medicine?
- Click here for all the details, or just go directly to our member sign up page and fill out the information to get started. From there we will contact you to schedule an appointment. You are always welcome to call us or request a meet and greet at the bottom of this page if you are still not sure about joining.
What is not covered with membership in Pure Family Medicine?
- Any healthcare you receive outside of our office is not covered with membership.
- Medication is not covered, however we can obtain many medications at a large discount and will dispense these to our patients at cost.
- Laboratory testing in general is not included, but offered for low cash prices to members. Certain in house diagnostics are covered at no additional cost with membership.
- Vaccines are not covered, but are available for either direct cash pay pricing or by billing insurance.
- This is not a comprehensive list. See our membership page for more details, or call our office if you have any questions about what is or is not included.
Will your membership costs ever change?
- Possibly. Like everything else, our costs for medical supplies and services are constantly increasing.
- As a privately owned practice, we can control costs much more effectively than larger organizations. While insurance premiums are increasing by 6-8% per year, we don’t foresee any membership fee increases in the near future.
- If we do decide it is necessary to increase prices in the future, we will notify our members well in advance of the change.
Do you prescribe narcotic medication or controlled substances?
- In general, no. We believe in managing pain without use of these medications, however there are rare circumstances where they are appropriate. We have a very strict narcotic and controlled substance policy for patients who are on these medications, and not following medical recommendations will result in dismissal from the practice.
Will you visit me in the hospital?
- Due to insurance and credentialing requirements imposed on doctors by hospital systems, Dr. Bub has elected not to carry hospital privileges and cannot visit you in the hospital. We will still be available by phone, text, e-mail, or telemedicine to help provide guidance should you be admitted to the hospital.
What if I have to see a specialist?
- There will be some health issues that extend beyond the scope of primary care. When patients are referred to a specialist, we take an active role in overseeing and coordinating their care, and will be available to answer any questions they have about specialist recommendations.
- Patients typically opt to use their health insurance for specialist visits, however there are specialists in the area who will offer lower rates for cash-pay patients.
- For certain conditions, Dr. Bub can consult with specialists via telemedicine and can care for you in our clinic. There is an additional fee for this service, however it is typically lower than a traditional specialist visit.
What happens if I have an after hours emergency?
- If you are having a life threatening emergency, call 911 immediately.
- For members with non-life threatening emergencies, call Dr. Bub and she will return your call as soon as possible. If your health concern is an emergency, Dr. Bub will recommend you go to an emergency room or urgent care center. If it is safe to wait, Dr. Bub will see you ASAP the next business day.
- Urgent care or emergency visits are not covered in your membership, however having access to your physician after hours may help you avoid an unnecessary visit to the ER.
- Non-members with a non-life threatening after hours emergency should contact Dispatch Health or go to their nearest neighborhood urgent care center or ER.
- At Pure Family Medicine, we take your privacy very seriously. When you use health insurance in a typical health care setting, your private medical information is shared with the insurance company. Additionally, your records are accessible to everyone in that hospital system. In our practice, your records are private. We will only share them with your permission, or if you request a referral or opt to have insurance cover testing, medication, etc.
- Our members have a ton of flexibility when it comes to privacy. If you want to communicate with us via text message, you have that option. If regular email is most convenient for you, that’s fine too. If you want only the most secure communication, use our excellent secure communication app Spruce Health so that all your information is protected. The choice is yours.
- You can find our HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices here. This is a standard federally mandated form that you will find at all medical practices.
Where are you located?
- Our west Littleton primary care office is located across the street from Dakota Ridge high school, off of Coal Mine Ave just south of Bowles. Our address is 13402 W Coal Mine Ave, Suite 250 Littleton, CO 80127.