Why Are We a “Cash Pay”, Out of Network Practice?
As both a working mother and small business owner, I understand the need to make a household budget go further and I’m always looking for creative ways to manage costs. There’s no way around it, health insurance costs more while giving patients less. At the same time, Portland, Oregon cost of living is increasing faster than wages in many industries. On the other hand, technology’s influence on the world means that life happens at a geometrically faster pace. As a result, our careers and professional lives are often more stressful than ever. Today’s work and social/family environments demand optimum physical health with mental acuity and emotional wellbeing also in being in a peak state.
How we save you money while delivering uncompromising excellence in naturopathic primary care medicine
Our patients deserve uncompromised healthcare that also respects their personal budgets. As a Naturopath in Portland and an Oregon licensed primary care physician (ND, LAc), my core value is giving patients the highest quality care and the best value at our Integrative medical clinic, Terrain Wellness. With regard to insurance, we have chosen to be an Out-of-Network provider because health insurance focuses on doing the minimum, while we prefer to focus on giving our best. Nonetheless, we also care about your bottom line, so we provide a specially-coded receipt known as a “superbill” for naturopathic and acupuncture visits. While payment is due at the time of service, patients can submit the “superbill” we provide to their insurance for possible/partial reimbursement or credit toward an insurance deductible. Some patients further manage costs by using HSA (Health Savings Account) funds to cover their care.
As licensed primary care physicians, it’s worth noting that we can write prescriptions and order labs through your insurance company when appropriate. That said, many patients find that our specially negotiated, cash-discount lab orders are often far cheaper than their insurance co-pay on labs. Most importantly though, our in-depth 1-hour naturopathic & acupuncture sessions provide the extra time you need with the doctor to truly feel heard and receive in-depth treatments not possible in an insurance-dependent practice. The best value is us taking extra time to give each and every one of our patients the finest in one-on-one healthcare.
The best value is us taking extra time to give each and every one of our patients the finest in one-on-one healthcare.
Naturopathic Concierge Healthcare Portland, Oregon
Some of our patients see us on a regular basis even though they’re already very healthy. This is a great way to stay on track with your health goals so you can continue functioning in a peak state. In the future, we plan to roll out a holistic primary care concierge healthcare program to better serve our discerning clientele. Currently, we encourage patients to come in every month or so when possible for acupuncture naturopathic health consultation.
The limits of health insurance
In my opinion, health insurance is like car insurance in that it will help cover a major catastrophic event. But, car insurance doesn’t cover tires, brakes, oil changes or any of the routine maintenance needed to keep your car in top shape. In a similar fashion, health insurance can be a life-saver during a health crisis but it’s not designed to get your body running in a peak state of health. Patients appreciate our whole-body approach to preventative healthcare, treating chronic conditions and at times when their primary care provider hasn’t been able to help them. Rather than just fixing what’s broken, we examine in-depth lab tests and diagnostics far beyond a normal doctor’s visit so we can tune your body to function in its best state of wellness. Some of our patients already feel good in their day-to-day health but they seek us out to optimize their already-robust health for even greater peak performance.
Doctors feel pressure from insurance companies to solve the problem fast, often in just one 15 minute appointment. This often leads skilled doctors into performing a brief, perfunctory visit and simply prescribing another pill. Patients with complex health conditions not easily solved with a short visit and a simple prescription find our slower, in-depth approach to be a much better way to arrive at a more sustainable, long-term solution to their health needs. Of course, insurance doctors and medical researchers do an amazing job within the bounds of what insurance companies will cover. However, in an insurance-based practice, healthcare decisions are made based on what insurance will pay for rather than what’s best for the patient. This healthcare-by-insurance committee model does not fit with the precepts of naturopathic medicine, holistic primary care and Chinese Medicine / Acupuncture.
In closing, our commitment to excellence in healthcare is why we’re proud to be an Out-of-Network Provider. The cheapest option is hardly ever the best option, but we’re still taking proactive steps to respect your finances. Our commitment is giving you the finest in one-on-one healthcare while helping you manage costs by providing superbills for possible reimbursement/deductible and negotiating deep discounts on labs.
Yours in Health,
Dr Danielle Smith Lockwood, ND-LAc