Uninsured Care – How to Receive Free Doctor Visits
Seeing a Doctor…
There are eight clinic sessions each week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday beginning at 8:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.
Appointments can only be obtained in person. The schedule is open to Benefactors until 8:15 a.m. each morning and 1:15 p.m. each afternoon. Remaining available visits are given to Recipients.
If there is not enough time for everyone, some people will be asked to return at another time. We use our best medical judgment to decide who should be seen first. It is not simply a first-come first-served basis.
What is St. Luke’s Family Practice?
How does your clinic work?
St. Luke’s Family Practice is a non-profit medical office designed to provide free doctor visits to uninsured persons of our community. We are supported by our generous Benefactors, people with health insurance who pay the practice directly for ready access to our physicians. We do not bill any insurance or the government. We cover doctor visits and can recommend low-price options for medications, lab tests, and x-rays. We do not cover specialist visits, operations, or hospital care for our uninsured patients.
Are there other clinics like St. Luke’s Family Practice?
St. Luke’s Family Practice is a first-of-its-kind private charity, a non-profit doctor’s office, established in 2004 to provide basic primary care services to uninsured persons in our community. There are other clinics in other states that have copied our model.
Is St. Luke’s a church or government clinic?
No. St. Luke’s Family Practice is a private charity and we receive no support from any church or government agency.
Hours and Locations
Where is St. Luke’s Family Practice?
We have eight clinic session per week. One in the morning at 8:15 am and one in the afternoon at 1:15 pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Fridays. We close at noon for lunch and end our day at 5:00 pm. We are closed on Wednesdays.
How do I make an appointment?
Appointments can only be obtained in person. Our Benefactors have first choice of appointment times. At sign-up for each clinic session we distribute the remaining appointment times to uninsured persons free of charge.
Are you open on evenings, weekends, and holidays? What happens when you are closed?
No. Our doctors only provide care to our paying Benefactors 24/7/365. We are closed to uninsured care on evenings, weekends, holidays, and the weeks of Easter, Christmas, and New Year’s. We post a list of local urgent cares you may see at your expense, but if you have an emergency, go to the nearest emergency room.
If I am first in line, am I guaranteed an appointment?
Not necessarily. We strive to provide care to everyone who presents on time at every clinic. However, if there are not enough appointments for all, we will make a decision based upon medical priority about who will be seen that half-day. Priority is given to acute problems and existing patients.
What does St. Luke’s cover?
We cover doctor visits and any treatments or testing that we perform in the office at no charge. We can also recommend low-price options for medications, lab tests, and x-rays. We do not cover specialist visits, operations, or hospital care for our uninsured patients.
Will you pay for my medicines?
No. Patients are responsible for the full cost of their medications, but our providers are experts at knowing the least expensive ways to get you the medications you need. We utilize the $4 formulary at WalMart stores, and we know the best cash-pay prices for other medications at other local pharmacies.
How do I get refills of my medications?
Once you are a patient at St. Luke’s, you may call your pharmacy 3-4 days in advance. Pharmacies contact us electronically for refills every day of the year, even when the office is closed. By transmitting the refill information from your pharmacy to our electronic health record, we minimize the risk of mixing up the medication or dose, and always send the medication to the right pharmacy.
What tests can you do in your office?
We perform basic office lab studies: urinalysis, blood sugar, urine pregnancy tests, hematocrit, INR tests for patient on blood thinners, electrocardiograms (EKG), basic breathing tests, and hearing screenings. We do not draw blood tests in our office.
What about blood tests and x-rays?
As a non-profit clinic, we have access to exceptionally low rates available for most blood tests and x-rays. Most common blood tests cost $10 each, up to a maximum of $40. Most plain x-rays cost $25 or $40. These prices are a small fraction of the usual cost.
What about more advanced imaging?
We have access to most advanced imaging. Sonograms are $100 – $150. CT and MRI scans range in price from $250 – $650. These prices are a small fraction of the usual cost. We do not make any profit from the cost of these services. To get these low prices, we must guarantee payment to the lab and x-ray providers on a regular monthly basis. We cannot bill or accept payment over time for any of these services. In cases of extreme need, we are sometimes able to help defray the cost of these studies through donations.
Can you refer me to a specialist?
We can refer you to specialists, but we cannot guarantee payment. Some offices partner with our office to provide consultations at decreased cost. For example, a gastroenterologist provides a consultation and colonoscopy or endoscopy for under $500.
Do you perform operations?
We perform basic skin procedures (suturing and skin biopsies) and apply splints and casts for sprains and simple broken bones here in the office. We can always refer you to a surgeon, if necessary, but you are responsible for the entire cost. We do not cover any operations at surgical centers or hospitals.
Do you provide dental care?
Do you provide dental care? No, however there is another local charity that provides dental care through the Hope Dental Van.
Do you provide Women’s Health Services?
Yes. We provide health care for uninsured women. This includes a complete gynecological examination. We can send a specimen for a pap smear for $28 and a mammogram is just $50. You may also be able to receive these services free of charge through other government programs, such as Every Woman Counts at other offices. For more information, call 1-800-511-2300.
Do you prescribe birth control?
No. As practicing Catholics, we do not provide contraceptives, abortions or sterilizations. However, we are happy to provide married couples information and referrals for Natural Family Planning, a very low-cost and non-hormonal method of recognizing times of fertility to help with both avoidance of pregnancy and achieving pregnancy.
Help Us Help You
- Show up promptly at 8:00am or 1:00pm Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, or Friday.
- Bring paperwork that proves you are not eligible for government programs.
- Be patient; it is very much appreciated.
- We are working hard to expand our services to help more uninsured people.
- When people are angry or demanding it slows down care for everyone.