“Partners in Care”
At Sanctuary Functional Medicine we care for many patients who chose to leave the insurance world behind. Some carry no insurance of any type, but many chose to enroll in healthcare cost sharing programs like Samaritan’s Ministries. In these programs, members chose to divide monthly healthcare costs for the entire group between individual members. Administering these programs costs less and more of each member’s contributions go to other member’s care. When we care for these patients we consider ways we can help the patient and Samaritan’s membership get the most benefit out of these choices.
As a Samaritan’s member myself, I understand that patients in our clinic take the responsibility for covering healthcare costs until Samaritan’s membership sends a check in 1-2 months after submitting an invoice. We also recognize that our efforts in wise therapy choices can save both the patient and Samaritans’ some money. First, we provide tests and nutrition therapies (vitamins, etc.) at wholesale pricing. There is no incentive for our office to order 5 more tests that might profit another 50 or 100 dollars. There is no incentive to recommend 5 more supplements except our goal of helping patients live healthier lives.
Second, we are now locked into using only one lab company. We utilize a number of different labs both for the sake of accessing the highest quality lab tests, but also so that we can choose according to financial considerations. Sometimes two companies offer very similar test panels. The main difference may be that if someone has insurance, lab company A’s insurance price is better than company B’s. On the other hand, if someone is paying cash for the lab, company B offers a lower cash price. Medically the tests are near identical. Financially, we may save the patient and Samaritan’s $100 or more in the difference.
Third, in working with Samaritans on many patients, we can provide appropriate invoices to satisfy Samaritan’s requirements. We have divided up our program billing so that patients can get reimbursed along the way for care. The members do have to know that Samaritan’s will only cover services that have occurred and will not prepay for future services. These invoices include supplement therapy forms which allow members to receive a few months of reimbursement for supplements and medications they need.
Overall, Samaritan Ministries members are able to get the care they need at the best prices available with our foresight and guidance. Just another way we help our Samaritan patients work towards healthier more abundant lives. Sanctuary and Samaritan Ministries are great partners in caring for those who suffer.