Health insurance companies in Canada are starting to offer discounts to people who use longstreet clinics.
A longstreet clinic can take advantage of a health insurance discount if a patient who needs care is treated by a doctor who works at the clinic, and the patient pays a portion of the costs, typically 10% of the cost of the services.
The doctor’s fees are not covered by insurance and can be passed along to the patient.
The clinic can also use the discounts to pay for out-of-pocket costs such as medications.
The idea is to make longstreet care affordable and accessible for people who otherwise would not have access to health insurance.
The Alberta Health Plan, the health insurance plan for the province, has been looking at longstreet health care clinics for more than a year.
They’re in the process of opening up a pilot program, and are working with other insurers to figure out what it costs them to provide coverage.
But there’s a catch: many longstreet facilities will not accept Medicaid and, since they’re privately owned, can’t participate in the federal government’s expansion of Medicaid coverage.
The longstreet doctors are not getting a dime from the federal program, but the provincial health plan is getting some cash to cover the costs.
It’s not the first time longstreet is getting a cut of the federal Medicaid expansion.
For the first year, longstreets clinics were exempt from the Medicaid expansion because they weren’t participating in the Alberta Health Program.
But the provincial government decided to change that because of the rising costs associated with longstreet’s medical practices.
Alberta Health Minister Lisa Raitt said that longstreet can expect to receive some money from the government this year, but it will likely be a fraction of the $40 million it is spending to provide longstreet services in Alberta this year.
“We’re going to continue to be very focused on longstreet as a provider of care and a provider that we’re able to deliver to the people who need care, whether they’re low income or if they’re in a difficult circumstance,” she said.
The province will still have to negotiate with insurance companies for the money, but Raitt expects that the money will be passed down to longstreet in the form of discounts, as well as to other longstreet providers, such as health centres and hospitals.
Longstreet’s longstreet patients are not the only ones to get discounts this year for health care.
The government has also offered a rebate to those who go to a longstreet provider for treatment at an out-patient clinic, even though the clinic doesn’t have insurance.
That rebate will be available to patients who have insurance coverage, but are not enrolled in a longterm care insurance plan, and for people with out-patients and long-term care contracts.
Longstreets clinics will have to pass the money on to longtermcare providers to cover longstreet costs, so longstreet has to make up some of the difference, which is something that longstreets says is not fair.
“The way we do this, the way we’ve been doing it, is if you’re a longstreet patient, you’re getting the full rebate from the health care system,” said Longstreys chief medical officer, Jennifer McBride.
“You’re getting some help from the public system.
The money is going to be passed to longstreys out-standing patients.”
Longstreues staff have been meeting with government representatives to discuss the program and to ensure that the incentives are fair, McBride said.
“I think that’s the goal here, is to have this program as sustainable as possible and that the incentive program is fair.”
Longstreet said that it hopes to be able to offer discounted services in 2017, as long as it has enough funding to keep up with the demand.
The Calgary Clinic is the only longstreet-based clinic in Alberta, and they have about 200 clients.
But for the time being, the Calgary Clinic will continue to provide services at the old Longstreet Clinic in Victoria, which closed in March.
Longs health care team is working to keep the longstreet facility open, but said they won’t be able do that indefinitely.
“If the funding isn’t there for us, if we can’t stay open for long, then the doors will close,” said the manager of the longstrees clinic.
“It’s going to take a while, but we’ll get there.”
With files from the Associated Press.