HOUSTON — On Thursday, the University of Houston School of Medicine will officially open its first healthcare clinic. It caters to the uninsured. Patients will pay a monthly subscription fee of $60.
The UH College of Medicine Direct Primary Care Clinic for the Uninsured operates out of Memorial Hermann Southwest. It's a strategic location.
According to Dr. Stephen Spann, founding dean of UH College of Medicine, one in three people in the surrounding area live below the poverty line and about 45% are uninsured.
“It works on the premise of patients buying a modest monthly subscription to receive broad primary care services,” Spann said.
Staffed by UH College of Medicine physicians, care includes checkups, sick visits, telemedicine and long-term care. Medicines and diagnostic tests will also come at reduced costs.
“There’s no limit to the number of consults per month,” Spann said. “They can come as many times as needed.”
Spann believes that building a long-term relationship between patient and care team is important when it comes to a person’s short and long-term health.
The clinic is the medical school’s first in a planned network of DPC clinics aimed at increasing access to care for those without health insurance.
Houston has the highest rate of uninsured residents in the nation, according to a press release from UH.
Startup costs for the pilot clinic were funded by a $1 million gift from The Cullen Trust for Health Care.
“At the end of the day, we hope that this will go a ways towards improving the health and healthcare in our community,” Spann said.
For more information on Direct Primary Care clinic services or how to become a member, please visit the website or call 713-743-0791.