FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Why is there a membership fee?
The membership fee allows us to provide the majority of primary care in an innovative way for a simple, fixed price. It allows members to better budget their health care finances and helps our practice provide the services we offer at affordable prices.
Why would I pay "extra" fees for health care?
The membership fee is better thought of as a more affordable and efficient way to access primary care. Most members will save money by combining Relief DPC with a high-deductible health insurance or medical cost sharing plan when compared to traditional insurance models.
Can I just have a visit without becoming a member?
No, we do not provide visits or care outside of our standard membership system. However, if you would like to come check out our clinic and meet Dr Young before joining, we would be happy to answer any questions.
Are there any contracts or commitments? What if I decide to cancel?
We do not require members to sign any contracts that commit them to a certain period. Memberships are ongoing and open but must be paid ongoing in order to maintain service with us. If your membership lapses or you cancel and you would like to renew your membership with us there is a re-registration fee of $200.
Is this “concierge” medicine?
A little, but without the high price tag or insurance requirements. . . or valet parking! We provide a concierge level of service to all members but try to make things affordable for people of all incomes, with or without insurance.
Does Relief DPC accept members with existing medical problems?
Absolutely, and often these are the members who see the most benefit from our services. Our memberships (eligibility and fees) are not based upon any existing medical issues or conditions.
Are there any income or health guidelines for becoming a member?
No, we do NOT have any income or health guidelines to become a member. Our fees are the same regardless of income, insurance arrangement, level of health or utilization of our services.
What if I am healthy? and rarely go to the doctor?
That is great! Our primary focus is to keep members well and to avoid lots of "medical" care. As such, we can dedicate more time to prevention and lifestyle issues to continue to keep you away from the expensive, cumbersome health care system. However, when you do need care, we are available 24/7 to help get you back on track. Most of the unexpected trips to ER or urgent care that would have emptied your pocketbook can easily be covered in a same day visit at Relief DPC, often saving the member enough to justify the cost of a year worth of membership fees!
Can you provide memberships (virtual visits, etc.) to people “out of state”?
Our physician is only licensed in the state of Georgia and cannot practice medicine in other states. If a member establishes care (has a visit) in-person, we can provide remote monitoring of issues over phone and internet for some period of time. Ultimately, some care (sick visits, etc.) must be provided in-person, so we do not encourage patients to join our practice unless they can reasonably visit us in person on a regular basis.
Are there any hidden fees?
Nope. We provide most care to members without any fees at all! If we do charge for non-covered services, we are always transparent with our pricing. If we recommend outside services, we try very hard to find you an upfront, reasonable price if paying cash.
What about lab work and other testing?
All members have access to many basic lab and diagnostic testing (strep, EKG, urine dipstick, pregnancy test, etc.) for no charge at all. For non-covered labs we offer significantly discounted, wholesale prices - 50-90% less than insurance based prices. Some of our prices can be seen here. If you require testing not listed, you can contact us for pricing of just about anything.
How much does ___________ cost?
Contact us with specific requests. We are committed to upfront pricing of all of our services.
When do I pay my fees for medications, labs, etc.?
For any fees for non-covered services, we expect full payment at time of service for most services, including medications, labs, procedures, or these fees can be added to your next month’s membership fee.
How much will my first visit cost?
We do not charge "per visit". New members must pay a minimum of one month of membership fees at their first visit to establish care. If any non-covered services are required (labs, medications, etc.) the first visit cost may be slightly more.
How much does an annual physical/wellness visit cost?
All wellness visits are provided at no cost to all members!
What are your regular clinic hours? evenings? weekends?
Our regular clinic hours are 9:00a - 5:00pm, Monday-Friday. However, all members have access to the doctor 24/7 by phone/text/email/video and after-hours visits if required.
Are you a walk-in clinic? Do I need an appointment?
While we can always offer same or next-day visits to our members (even newbies), we do require scheduling all visits beforehand. A quick phone call or text to verify that we are free is usually all that is required.
How long are doctor visits?
As long as you need! Taking into the consideration the number and complexity of medical issues, most of our clinic visits are scheduled for 30-60 minutes.
What if I need outside care? Specialists, diagnostic testing, ER, hospital?
We can order or refer just as any insurance-based doctor can do. For some outside services, we can help find reasonable "cash" prices if you are paying out-of-pocket - especially radiology and lab. We can provide many urgent care and minor emergency services during regular or after-hours (stitches, evaluations, medications) that can help people avoid a trip to the ER. However, we do recommend having health insurance in the case of an unexpected, expensive event such as surgery, ER visit, or hospitalization.
Where can Dr Young do house calls?
Only within a 3 miles from our clinic on Whitemarsh Island or with prior approval.
What type of visits can I do by phone or webcam?
"Virtual visits" should be thought of as a supplement to good primary care - not a replacement for in-person care. Generally, if the issue does NOT require a physical exam, a virtual visit is fine. Many chronic issues (e.g. diabetes, hypertension, etc.) can be largely managed by email and virtual visits. However, any issue requiring a physical exam (e.g. coughs, sinus infections, ear infection, new pain, etc.) we will recommend a traditional clinic visit.
MEDICAL INSURANCE AND PLANS
Is Relief DPC insurance?
No. Thankfully, no!
Is Relief DPC a substitute for health insurance?
No. Relief DPC is a great way to receive high quality primary health care, but we do believe insurance is needed for unexpected and expensive events.
Can Relief DPC bill my insurance plan?
No. Relief DPC does NOT contract with any private or public insurance plans.
Does Relief DPC satisfy the requirement for “insurance” under the Affordable Care Act/Obamacare?
Not likely for individuals. However, this type of practice is loosely termed “Direct Primary Care” and is mentioned briefly in the Affordable Care Act as "participating in insurance exchanges with a wrap-around insurance plan”. The details of such are still very unclear, but we are not waiting around for Washington or any other capitols to provide our community with high quality, affordable primary care.
Do you accept Medicaid?
We do not contract with any Medicaid plans and cannot bill them for our services. Medicaid recipients are welcome to join Relief DPC but will likely also be assigned a "network Primary Care Physician (PCP)" that may be required to access other health plan benefits and services.
What about Medicare?
Yes. You only need to 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, or hospitalizations ordered by our office.
Can I use my insurance elsewhere if I join Relief DPC?
In most cases, yes. Your insurance plans will continue to operate “as usual” at other doctor's office, hospitals and pharmacies. PPO-style plans do not require a designated “gatekeeper” doctor for referrals, medications, tests, etc. Dr Young can order or refer just as another doctor would do. HMO-style plans do require an in-network designated primary doctor for access to other services.
Can I submit visit claims to my health insurance plan for reimbursement?
For the time being, insurance companies do NOT recognize our membership fees as a reimbursable expense. For non-covered service fees (labs, meds, imaging, etc.), we can provide a receipt of payment so you can process with your insurance plan if you wish. However, most of our members have not found it not worth the time and effort to do so except for large expenses (i.e. MRIs).
Can I use my FSA or HSA accounts with Relief DPC?
Please contact an accounting or legal professional to discuss this matter as there is considerable debate regarding what qualifies for FSA and HSA spending. This is a confusing topic and the IRS has not made it any more clear at this time. There is current legislation pending to clarify this issue.
What type of insurance would you recommend?
We are not financial or health insurance advisers and recommend you speak with a professional in that industry if you have questions. However, our members often find that a high-deductible (or catastrophic) insurance plan or a healthcare cost sharing ministry tend to be the best pair with Relief DPC. We can provide day-to-day services and a high-deductible plan or a cost sharing ministry can help limit the enormous expenses of a major event.
MEDICAL SERVICES AND MEDICATIONS
Is this an “alternative” medicine practice?
We think of our business model as an alternative to managed care medicine, but we are not "alternative" in the way we practice medicine. Dr Young is a board-certified family physician (American Board of Family Physicians) and practices very traditional and highly evidence-based medicine. Dr Young also has a certificate in Integrative Medicine and is open to complementary healing modalities. She is open to discuss with you how other healing professionals can be a part of your overall healthcare team.
Can you do women’s care? pap smears? OB?
Yes and No. We can provide standard women’s and gynecologic services, including pelvic exams, pap smears, birth control and menopause management. Dr Young will not provided any prenatal or obstetrical care.
What happens if I go to the hospital? Can my doctor see me?
Dr Young can see you as a social visit, to review your hospital course with you and your hospital team. She will not be able to place orders or directly review hospital medical records. We hope to decrease hospitalizations to a minimum through excellent preventative care, but in the event that you do go to the hospital, you will be cared for by the hospitalist or your specialist, admitting physician.
Can Relief DPC work for kids? pediatrics?
Absolutely! We love kids. We can provide all standard childhood health care services including yearly physicals, acute care (sore throats) and chronic disease management (asthma, allergies, etc.). We are NOT currently giving childhood vaccinations, but can review records and send you elsewhere for completion.
What are Relief DPC’s views and policies on vaccines?
We believe that it is reasonable for parents to be cautious regarding injecting or ingesting artificial substances into their children's body! However, medical evidence shows (and we agree) that benefits of most vaccines far outweigh their risks. We recommend a standard schedule of childhood & adult vaccines. Dr Young is open to discussing vaccines with all of our patients and does not limit membership to any patient based on vaccine status.
Do you give vaccines?
No. Our doctor can review vaccine records and refer you to several places to have them completed as needed.
Can you manage chronic pain? prescribe narcotics?
There are many modalities available to help minimize pain of chronic conditions and we aggressively work with patients to achieve adequate comfort. Relief DPC generally has a cautious and conservative approach to using narcotic/opiate medications such as hydrocodone, morphine, Lortab, Percocet, etc. We rarely use these controlled and potentially dangerous medications for acute pain, and we have a policy of not prescribing opiate or other controlled medications for chronic problems.
What about mental health problems? depression, anxiety?
Our doctor is comfortable providing primary care for most any mental health problem, including prescribing medications related to these problems. Relief DPC generally has a conservative and careful approach when using medications to treat mental health problems and strongly promote the use of non-medicine therapies and lifestyle changes.
Can you treat ADD/ADHD? prescribe amphetamines, Adderall?
Most cases of attention-related problems can be managed with lifestyle changes, therapy and educational techniques. Our physician does not prescribe or manage use of amphetamine medications (Ritalin, Adderall, etc.). If someone does require pharmaceutical assistance for ADD/ADHD, we can refer them to a specialist for medication management.