Doctors Care History – Celebrating 25 Years
Located in South Metro Denver, Colorado, Doctors Care – started as a grassroots effort by a group of passionate and determined physicians, a committee of the Arapahoe Medical Society – is a community-funded, nonprofit organization that helps underserved children, adults and families receive the medical attention they need. Our dedicated staff, board of directors and partners have provided a medical home to thousands of uninsured or underinsured patients since 1988, witnessing individual lives being transformed because of the work we do.
What We Do
Doctors Care delivers health services for low-income patients through a two-pronged, community-based approach:
- The Doctors Care Clinic operates five days per week providing sick and well-care visits to children and young adults age 30 and under who need to be seen onsite by a physician assistant or volunteer physician. Our clinic accepts patients with Medicaid, CHP+, the Doctors Care sliding-fee scale and those who are uninsured for a low flat rate.
- Uninsured patients of any age may enroll in the Doctors Care Sliding-Fee-Scale Program, where patients are assigned to physicians in the community who have agreed to provide services at significantly reduced fees. Nearly 1,000 physicians, representing 240 different practices and providing services in nearly 100 specialties – including surgery, neurology and cardiology – comprise the Doctors Care volunteer network.
Approximately 35 percent of the 3,000 physicians that practice in the organization’s service area participate in its extensive volunteer network. Unified by the Doctors Care mission to provide access to care for the medically underserved, no one person or practice bears the sole financial burden of caring for these patients because everyone works together to share the load.
Beginning with just two hospitals, now six major inpatient medical centers in South Metro Denver (Swedish Medical Center, Porter Adventist Hospital, Littleton Adventist Hospital, Sky Ridge Medical Center, Parker Adventist Hospital and Castle Rock Adventist Health Campus), and their respective laboratories and pharmacies participate by making services available and affordable to Doctors Care patients. Executive leadership of competing hospital systems (e.g., Centura and HealthOne) come together on the Doctors Care board to model collaboration in health care and affect real change in the community.
Doctors Care Patient
“It is a relief knowing that I can count on Doctors Care for my health. I loved having their referrals because I knew Doctors Care always sent me to the right place. I wish more counties could have this service so people could benefit from such a sympathetic and generous community service!”
What We Are Not
- We are not health insurance. Physicians and hospitals do not receive any payment from us, nor do patients pay a monthly or yearly premium to use our services.
- We are not a long-term health care service provider. Each patient in the Sliding-Fee-Scale Program over age18 has a maximum of two years of coverage in his or her lifetime. Exceptions are sometimes allowed on a case by case basis.
What Makes our Model Unique
What do we share with other successful nonprofits?
- An identified need that motivates action;
- Inspirational founders and leaders that are not afraid to ask for support;
- An engaged community with a vision for service;
- Medical professionals who care for the uninsured.
What sets us apart?
- A well-thought out, well-planned strategy with strong data collection elements;
- A methodology that has been tested and refined with thousands of patients;
- A unique approach to volunteerism that includes patient care, administration and community engagement;
- Staff members dedicated to physician recruitment efforts, as well as patient care and navigation of the system;
- Assurance that competing hospitals support their physician communities while reducing costs.