I’m not sure I understand how a retainer practice works. Can you describe the model?
Dr. Lance’s practice is a small, independent, solo endocrinology and internal medicine practice. It is characterized by a direct financial relationship between the physician and patient and takes health insurance out of the equation. It is designed to ensure excellent health care and unparalleled access to your doctor. This will help restore the doctor-patient relationship of the past, unencumbered by insurance company policies and provider network constraints. Dr. Lance does not participate with any insurance plans, including Medicare. There are two different plan levels of service provided for a Professional Fee.
ls this a type of medical insurance plan?
No. This is simply a medical practice model that will allow you to see Dr. Lance without the restrictions and complications often associated with insurance companies.
Do I still need my medical insurance if l join?
Yes. This is not meant to replace your health insurance and you should keep your private insurance. You will need it to help cover the cost of other physician visits, hospitalizations, labs, x-rays and other fees that typically arise outside of Dr. Lance’s office and to help cover the cost of medical services provided by Dr. Lance’s practice outside of the Professional Fee (where permitted).
Does it matter what kind of medical insurance I have?
No. Dr. Lance does not participate with any insurance.
I’m covered by Medicare. Can l see Dr. Lance?
Yes. Dr. Lance has opted out of Medicare, which means that he does not participate in Medicare’s programs. This does NOT mean that he cannot care for Medicare patients, nor does it mean that Medicare patients must forfeit their coverage by Medicare. lt means that neither he, nor Medicare patients, may bill Medicare for any portion of the Professional Fee or any other related expenses. Medicare patients sign a private contract acknowledging that they agree to a private relationship with Dr. Lance. The patient’s Medicare coverage still applies to other doctors, hospitals and Medicare-covered services.
I am covered by an HMO. Can l see Dr. Lance?
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, Dr. Lance cannot act as your primary care physician, nor will they cover the cost of the Professional Fee.
I am in a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). Can I see Dr. Lance?
Yes. While you will be responsible for the Professional Fee, you may be able to submit bills to your insurance company for reimbursement. Since Dr. Lance is not affiliated with any insurance companies, any reimbursement is appropriately yours to keep. For insurance purposes, Dr. Lance is considered an “out of network” physician. Reimbursement levels are determined by your particular policy and may be subject to an annual deductible.
I have a Flex Spending Plan or Medical Savings Account through my employer. Can I access that for the Professional Fee?
Possibly yes, but check with your plan administrator. By using pre-tax dollars designated for medical expenditures, you may find these plans could reduce your out-of-pocket costs by as much as 30 to 40%.
Can I use HSA money to cover the Professional Fee?
Possibly yes, however, if you decide to use your HSA money to pay for the Professional Fee, consult your accountant first.
How can I reach Dr. Lance?
Dr. Lance is available to his patients 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, with the exception of vacations and unexpected emergencies. There is no answering service. For routine or non-urgent matters, you have the option of calling the office or sending an email. If you need to speak with Dr. Lance regarding an urgent matter, you may contact him at the office during office hours or directly by cell phone after hours. If he is not able to take your call immediately, he will contact you as quickly as possible.
What happens when Dr. Lance is away on vacation or unavailable?
Dr. Lance will make arrangements with an experienced board certified physician to provide outpatient and hospital coverage during infrequent times of unavailability.
What happens if I move away or choose to leave the practice? Will I be reimbursed some portion of the Professional Fee?
Yes. lf you choose 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 & Comprehensive Health Assessment for the year, then $400 will be deducted from any pro-rated refund owed to you.
So is this type of practice right for me?
In view of the changes occurring in the landscape of medical practice, it is becoming more difficult by the day to provide the time needed for optimal healthcare. This type of practice allows Dr. Lance to continue to provide high-quality care in a relaxed environment and gives patients the opportunity to be seen rapidly for urgent matters. For someone looking for an old-fashioned, strong physician-patient relationship, this type of practice is for you.
Where is Dr. Lance’s office located?
The office is located at 5999 Harpers Farm Road, Suite 215 in Columbia. The building is at the intersection of Harpers Farm Road and Little Patuxent Parkway across from Howard Community College.
How can I obtain further information?
If you have any further questions, please send an email to info@DrBarryLance.com or call the office at 443-546-4111.