Frequently asked questions

How is Holton Direct Care different than traditional medical clinics?


Holton Direct Care uses an innovative model of care known as Direct Primary Care (DPC). In this model, doctors are paid directly by their patients, rather than through governmental payers or insurance companies. Basically, we're cutting out the middle man, along with the hassles. This model of health care is rapidly growing. DPC is reminiscent of the doctor-patient relationship from times gone by, when doctors didn’t have thousands of patients, had plenty of time to spend with you, and you didn’t have to wait weeks for your appointment. Cutting out all the middlemen and red tape increases the doctor and the patient's satisfaction, and dramatically cuts costs.




What can I expect as a patient?


You can expect very short wait times, longer appointments, and almost 24/7 access to your doctor. No more rushed visits or waiting weeks for an appointment. You can contact your physician via phone, text, e­mail, or social media, day or night. Find out more about our benefits in the Member Benefits section of our website.




Do I still need insurance?


All patients are encouraged to have at least major medical insurance coverage. The ACA legislation does exempt patients from the underinsured/non­insured tax if you have major medical/catastrophic coverage and a physician on retainer, which is what you will get with Holton Direct Care. One way to save money on your healthcare is by getting insurance with low premiums and high deductibles. DPC doctors strive to eliminate insurance claims. Let's say you need some routine lab tests. Why pay $200 toward a deductible you're unlikely to meet when you can get the same tests from a DPC doctor for $15 in cash? (That in many cases can also be applied to your deductible!)




Can my fees be reimbursed by my insurance company?


In some cases, you can submit a receipt for your membership fees or lab/medication costs. Some insurance companies will apply these payments toward a deductible.




Can I use my Health Savings Account to pay for Direct Primary Care?


The law currently allows the use of HSA money to pay for medications, imaging tests, labs, etc. However, it is legally unclear if HSA funds can be used to pay for DPC membership fees. This is a question for your tax professional. Legislation has been proposed to clear up the question regarding if HSA money can be spent on a DPC physician's retainer or membership fee.




How much does it cost?


Our monthy membership fees are based on the patient's age. In addition to low monthly membership fees, we have an on-­site wholesale pharmacy which saves our patients significantly on prescription costs. In some cases, our patients have found that their prescription savings are greater than their membership fee. Patients are offered wholesale cash prices on lab tests as well (often 97% lower than clinics and hospitals inside the system) and we have negotiated contracts for bottom-dollar access to imaging services such as X­-Ray, CT, MRI, Mammogram, and more. Click this link to find out more about our pricing.




How can you guarantee same or next-day appointments?


Dr. Lassey only plans to accept approximately 500 patients. Considering that managed care has driven modern era physicians to patient panels of 2,000 to 4,000 or more, it's no wonder you encounter long waits and very little time with your doctor. We keep our patient panel low so we can spend plenty of time with you and get you in quickly. This is the kind of attention and accessbility we'd want our family to have, and it's what we offer our patients.




Will Dr. Lassey still take care of me if I need to be admitted to the hospital?


Dr. Lassey does have privileges at Holton Community Hospital, and he will care for you there as part of your membership. The hospital won't charge you or your insurance for Dr. Lassey's professional fees, since that's a part of your membership benefit. However, routine hospital facility fees (nursing care, food, medication, procedures, xrays, etc.) will be charged by the Hospital to you or your insurance company/Medicare, etc. If you are admitted to a different hospital, such as a hospital in Topeka, Dr. Lassey will not be able to care for you there. He will, however, stay in close communication with the doctors caring for you, and will be ready to assume post-hospital follow-up care.




Can I get all of my medications from Holton Direct Care's pharmacy?


As a member, you have access to our entire pharmacy, and you pay only our cost, which is nearly always below retail pharmacy prices. We only dispense medications we can save you money on. Therefore, almost all of the medications in our extensive inventory are generic. Name-brand prescriptions are generally expensive, and therefore you'll normally get a better price on name brand drugs using an insurance prescription drug benefit or a prescription drug discount card at your local pharmacy. We also do not dispense any DEA-controlled medications such as narcotic pain medicine, sedatives, or stimulants.




What if I need to be referred to a specialist? Do you offer access to specialty services?


Holton Direct Care utilizes a service called RubiconMD that offers web-based eConsults with top specialists across the country. These eConsults allow our patients to receive more comprehensive care while often avoiding unnecessary and inconvenient referrals to specialists. The RubiconMD eConsult service incurs no additional cost for patients. If you need to see a specialist in person, we are happy to refer you.




How can I contact Dr. Lassey after hours?


We know that illness and injuries don't always happen during office hours. If you just need to get in touch with us to order a medication refill or schedule an appointment, you can directly e-mail Nurse Sharon or Dr. Lassey anytime, or leave us a voice mail or even a Facebook message. If you have a non-urgent question, but one that probably shouldn't wait until tomorrow, members can send Dr. Lassey a text message and expect a prompt reply. Lastly, if you have an urgent issue after-hours, Dr. Lassey is only a phone call away!




Are there medications Dr. Lassey does not prescribe?


Dr. Lassey is not accepting new patients for pharmaceutical treatment of Chronic Pain. New Opioid Prescribing Guidelines have recently been released by the CDC to combat the prescription drug abuse epidemic, and those patients who use narcotics for chronic pain are encouraged to seek a pain treatment center. Dr. Lassey does not prescribe weight loss medications, due to lack of proven long-term effectiveness and adverse risk profile and side effects of such medications. Dr. Lassey does not prescribe controlled sedatives for the treatment of chronic anxiety.




Outside of paying for membership, medicine, or labwork/x-rays, are there other fees I might have to pay?


Almost all of the routine procedures Dr. Lassey performs have no additional charge to members. There are a few exceptions, for more complicated procedures. Our pricing page has details. As a membership benefit, Dr. Lassey will see sick or injured visiting family of his members for a reasonable one-time office visit fee based upon the severity and time requirements of the visit. Dr. Lassey may charge mileage at IRS rates for out-of-town housecalls.




Will Holton Direct Care see patients on a fee-for-service basis if they are NOT members?


Yes, but only for certain procedures. We offer cash prices on minor emergency surgical procedures (such as sewing up cuts) to non-members. We are also happy to provide some minor cosmetic surgical procedures for patients who are not members at very affordable prices. This is because most insurance plans will cover no "cosmetic" procedures. So if you have a benign, but annoying mole or skin tag for instance, insurance or medicare won't cover it's removal. These simple procedures are very expensive without insurance, traditionally. We also are happy to provide CDL Physicals, New Employment Physicals, and Urine Drug Screens very affordably for local employers, to non-members. HDC has the lowest prices around on these non-member services. HDC will also provide affordable office visits to visiting family members of HDC members. We understand that it's always miserable to get sick or hurt when you're away from home.




Seriously? Dr. Lassey makes housecalls??


Yes! There are times when a house call is the best answer, and Direct Primary Care affords family doctors the time to get out of the office when necessary, just like in the good old days. Obviously if we are driving, we can't be caring for people, so we'll be limiting housecalls to those absolutely necessary. For housecalls out of town, we will charge mileage, otherwise, there is no additional charge for housecalls.




Does Dr. Lassey still deliver babies?


Dr. Lassey proudly continued the tradition of full-spectrum family medicine, including obsetrics, through December of 2017, and he delivered babies at Holton Community Hospital after he began the Direct Care Model. Unfortunately, the Hospital ceased offering obsetrical services to the community at the close of 2017. Due to travel considerations for he and his patients, he chose to discontinue offering delivery as of January 2018. However, he plans to continue to offer prenatal services at Holton Direct Care, and then will transfer care of expectant mothers to delivering physicians in other towns when the mothers are close to delivery time. This will save moms from driving to other cities repetitively for routine checkups during the majority of the pregnancy.




I know that Dr. Lassey's beautiful wife, Erin, sells delicious sugary homemade baked goods and coffee on the square, at her awesome shop, Penny's. Isn't this an enormous conflict of interest?


Normally it would be. But luckily, Dr. Lassey eats all the leftovers himself, saving Holton from the certain cataclysmic diabetes epidemic that would otherwise bring the town to an untimely death. Athough eating all of Erin's delicacies would not be advice he would give his patients, luckily he has a strange genetic anomaly that somehow allows him to survive massive cabohydrate intake. Thus, like a big carb-pounding super hero, he single-handedly protects the town from the Penny's-related diabetes apocolypse. (Also, he encourages enjoying her all-natural treats in moderation, or preferably buying them in bulk and giving them away to neighbors, a sure-fire way to make friends.)




I'm getting robbed blind by my health insurance company! What are my options?


Unfortunately we hear this almost every day, and this is part of the reason we're here. Health insurance is not the same as health care, and health care does not have to be expensive. We don't have to insure primary care. Iit can be affordable. Direct Primary Care is proving this every day all across the country. However, even if you're using DPC to cover your preventative care and routine mecical needs, you still need to be protected from catastrophic expenses that can happen in the rare case of a medical emergency, hospitalization, surgery, etc. There are affordable short-term catastrophic insurance products available on the market, but most of them are only good for a few months at a time. While they're very affordable and definitely offer catastrophic protection, if you get a medical condition while you're on such a short-term plan, the insurance company will drop you like a bad habit the second the short term policy expires, which makes this a pretty lousy option over-all (not to mention you'd have to re-enroll several times a year). Although the ACA ("Obamacare") all but destoyed the "major medical" or "catastrophic" health insurance market (products that pair very well with DPC), there are still companies offering such plans. However, they're not ACA compatible, and at least for now, you'll probably have to pay the "Obamacare tax" for having such a plan. That's right, your government will punish you for insuring yourself. Some choose to go this route, and just pay the tax. A third option exists for people of the Christian faith, which works very well for many Holton Direct Care patients, and that is joining one of the Christian Health Sharing Ministries (CHSM). These non-profit companies existed before the ACA was enacted and were grandfathered in. They generally exist as underwritten refund-style memberships (where you get paid back by other members for your qualified healthcare expenses.) Often, they function much like catastrophic insurance, and are very affordable compared to ACA-compliant insurance plans, and because they are faith-based, the plans exempt the members from paying the ACA penalty (Obamacare tax). CHSMs include Liberty HealthShare, MediShare, Samaritan Ministries, and several others. A quick internet search will help you research these ministries. Lastly, there are still catastrophic plans available as group insurance products, as well as self-funded or partially-self-funded "ERISA" plans. Although these plans can save you lots of money, they're only available to groups, (I.e. employers.) Talk to your employer about finding a plan like this, as some of these companies give significant discounts to employers whose patients use DPC practices, and such employers are saving up to 60% on their insurance expenses. Allied National is a good example.





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