Alluvion Health launching direct primary care program available to the public
Alluvion Health is rolling out a new direct primary care program that is open to the public and intended to improve access to health care in Cascade County.
Alluvion Vitality Partnership is modeled after others that have been developed nationwide and is a membership-based health care plan in which people can pay a monthly fee for unlimited visits and a variety of health care services.
Trevor Bolton is Alluvion’s employee wellness program manager and is overseeing the Vitality Program.
It’s open to the public and can be used as a benefit by employers who might not otherwise be able to offer health care to their employees. It’s up to employers whether they want to split the cost with employees.
The focus is to improve access and “keeping the cost affordable,” Bolton said.
The plan is not health insurance and since there’s a monthly fee, there aren’t additional charges for each visit and there’s no third party billing.
Bolton said it’s a good option for people who need medical, behavioral or dental services but can’t afford insurance, or it can be used to supplement a high deductible insurance plan.
Right now, there are two plan options.
One plan includes medical, behavioral and dental care for $199 per month. The other plan is only medical services for $99 per month. The included services are listed lower in this article.
Bolton said Alluvion took on the direct primary care concept as an innovative health care model and to bridge for those who don’t have health insurance or access to care and “not face that financial burden.”
Program participants could walk-in or make appointments for services and will establish care with an Alluvion provider.
Bolton said that if it’s doable, Alluvion encourages people to have a high deductible plan in case of a catastrophic event and use the direct primary care plans for preventative care since it’s not for emergencies or serious injuries.
Tanya Houston, Alluvion’s director of communications and workforce development, said the hope is to help more people access health care, particularly preventative services, to either prevent or catch bigger health issues sooner, which is better for the community as a whole.
Alluvion received a $33,000 grant from the Montana Healthcare Foundation to support the direct primary care program.
The direct primary care model has been implemented in other communities but it’s “pretty progressive” for Montana, Houston said.
Bolton said it would be a good option for people managing chronic health problems, those needing a lot of lab work, or those who want to be proactive about their health.
The plans are currently available and people have already stated using the services, Bolton and Houston said.
The medical services include:
- primary care services, including acute and comprehensive care
- preventative care and mens and womens health screenings
- physicals and annual exams
- care for common illnesses and minor injuries
- management of chronic illnesses such as diabetes, depression and high blood pressure
- in-house labs, such as flu, strep, blood hemoglobin, finger stick glucose, urine dip
- recommended immunizations
- referrals to specialists
Behavioral health services include:
- individual counseling
- crisis management
- brief therapy
- referrals to community resources
- two preventative cleanings annually
- one set of annual X-rays
Services NOT covered by the plan:
- dental needs above and beyond the bi-annual cleanings/checkups
- radiology services
- laboratory services
- pharmacy services
- services outside Alluvion Health
To learn more or sign up for the program, call Trevor Bolton at 791-7922.