By Valerie Bauman
When Devin Bruckner selected a pediatrician for her 6-year-old son, she wasn’t just thinking about what was best for him – she found an option that would be good for her community too.
Bruckner took her son to the recently opened HopeCentral nonprofit health center in Southeast Seattle’s Rainier Valley.
The new primary care practice has developed a unique business model, offering subscription-based, high-end concierge pediatric and behavioral health care. The twist is that the clinic also accepts Medicaid, and offers a sliding scale of prices for low-income people, so it’s not just serving those wealthy enough to buy into the concierge system.
Concierge medicine services typically include unlimited care for a monthly fee. As in the case of HopeCentral, they often include after-hours access to physicians.
“We heard about the vision and heard about the idea of bringing affordable pediatric care to the Rainier Valley, and we were excited about the idea,” Bruckner said.
The clinic also relies on donations to help offset overhead costs.
“We want to make sure that pediatric care is affordable for everybody,” said Dave Kwok, the clinic’s executive director.
The location is an ideal spot, Kwok said, because of the demand for pediatricians in Rainier Valley and the mix of low-income and wealthier residents.
For $59 per month, Bruckner has the assurance that she can bring in her son at any time, and at no additional cost.
“We get as many visits as you need with both the doctor and the behavioral health specialist,” Bruckner said. “And we might not need to see them at all, but if we need to use them they’re here.”