Frequently Asked Questions
Saffron Health is a unique combination of internal and functional medicine practice that aims at providing a well-rounded approach to your health and wellness.
Unlike traditional health practices, Saffron Health’s internal medicine services are membership-based and provide enhanced primary care services with a holistic approach and focus on modifiable lifestyle risk factors such as diet, exercise, stress management, and sleep.
We know, you’ve heard it all before! But when was the last time you have worked with a physician that cared about the cause of your suffering and worked with you to not only reduce it but prevent it from happening altogether?
One of the many unique features of Saffron Health is the emphasis placed on Holistic Care. We care about you and your well-being. Through specialized services aimed at identifying the root cause of chronic illnesses and a personal relationship with your doctor, together we work to halt and even reverse the disease processes.
Now how is that for a physician: patient relationship? With Saffron Health, you can consider us a part of your inner circle. Why? Because we care about your health as much as our own.
Imagine having someone that can answer any health question you may have without having to schedule appointments months in advance.
Imagine walking into your appointment knowing that for the next hour you will receive undivided attention from a professional that truly cares about your health.
Imagine being able to reach your physician directly on their cell instead of having to listen to elevator music for 45 minutes only to end up reaching Pam at the office in the end.
Imagine having an experienced internal medicine physician with extensive training in functional medicine and an in-depth understanding of disease processes that can see you the same or very next day.
Imagine not having to worry about receiving surprise bills months after your visit.
Does that sound too good to be true?
It was until Saffron Health decided to join the DPC movement to revolutionize the health industry. Armed with knowledge and care, we’re transforming the health industry, one patient at a time.
We do not.
If you think dealing with health insurance providers is excruciatingly time-consuming and frustrating on your end, imagine being a doctor and having to do that every single day! Majority of the time is spent in checking boxes and billing for the services provided.
To prevent headaches, both yours and ours, we decided to invest our time and energy in serving you and your healthcare needs. So, we eliminated anything that stands in the way of providing you with our undivided attention.
Having more readily available staff, time, and energy enables us to provide highly personalized, enhanced services and avoid the bitter experiences of insurance-based healthcare models that are characterized by rushed visits, inability to access the physician directly, and lack of personalized care.
While Saffron Health strives to prevent serious emergencies by providing personalized care and helping get you on track to health optimization, life happens, and when it does, you want to be prepared.
We highly recommend that you maintain your health insurance coverage for the medical needs that are outside of the scope of primary care (Hospitalizations, surgeries, specialist care, procedures etc.). Your health insurance also helps cover your prescription medication expenses.
We understand that your healthcare needs may change with time, and while we’d love to have you as part of our family, if you decide that it is time to part with Saffron Health, we will support you every step of the way.
As a parting gift, and a chance to cope with your absence, we require a 30-day notice of membership cancellation. If you signed up for annual membership and decide to cancel, we will refund you the rest of the balance. However, we must note that if you decide that you’ve missed our care, we do have a re-enrollment fee of 250$.
Saffron Health is an Internal Medicine practice and we see patients that are 18 years or older.
Great news! We are working to be able to start seeing Medicare patients soon! Because of the federal statutes we are not able to accept medicare patients at this time.
Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to join our waiting list to be notified of when this exciting change takes place.
Please note that similarly to other insurances, we do not bill Medicare for our services and all expenses are paid out of pocket at reduced rates. Medicare coverage can be utilized for your other health needs such as testing, labs and imaging, specialist care, hospitalization, etc.
While we are excited to hear you are doing well, the term ‘health’ can be perceived in various ways depending on who you ask.
For example, you are traveling out state and end up having urine infection, flu like symptoms, by having Saffron Health membership you do not have to run to an urgent care. Your doctor who knows you is here to help you and call in a prescription if needed.
At Saffron Health, we believe that health is not just the absence of disease, but rather, health is the body functioning at ease and YOU living your life to the fullest potential.
That is what sets Dr. Donthu and Saffron Health apart from other internal medicine providers. At Saffron Health, true wellness is a continuum and not just the presence or absence of a disease diagnosis.
Dr. Donthu further modified her definition of health with her knowledge of Functional Medicine – an in-depth training into the disease processes through which we can pick up early signs of disease processes, act quickly, and prevent the disease from developing altogether.
Unlike in the traditional insurance model, where doctors are only seen when a problem is already present, Saffron Health works to identify the issue before it presents itself and begins to affect your life. Through access, approachability, and continuity, a meaningful relationship with your doctor is built, and health begins to take on a whole new meaning.
The answer to this question is simple. Because the insurance-based healthcare system is broken. By following the traditional insurance-based system, your doctor is incentivized by the number of patients they see in a day, and the number of services completed. This equates to rushed visits full of unnecessary tests and procedures that are not personalized to your needs.
By joining a membership-based internal medicine practice such as Saffron Health, you save money and time while receiving undivided attention and care from your physician. The flat monthly or annual fee is incomparable to the cost of copays and deductibles you are forced to pay for services you didn’t really need.
Healthcare is not a one size fits all service. Every person requires the same level of attention and comprehensive quality care. When you combine a true passion for helping people and the knowledge and expertise it takes to do so, your health begins to take a drastic turn for the better.
The membership fee does not pay for your medications, nor does it pay for your hospitalization, what it does pay for, however, is the peace of mind knowing that your physician is available to you at any time and will work directly with you to resolve any health conditions that may be preventing you from truly living your life.
At Saffron Health, we believe your health is your personal journey. We are simply here to assist you in the journey to your personal health goals and guide you along the way whenever you need it.
We meet patients where they are and work with them to get to where they want to be. If your primary concern is treating an existing medical condition, nothing more, nothing less, the doctor will work with your wishes.
If you are someone that wants more than just conventional medicine, we have the skillset and knowledge to provide that support for you.
Dr. Donthu’s philosophy of health is all about gradual steps and changes. You don’t have to do it all at once. Small and simple to implement baby steps will help you get to your goal faster than you realize, the only thing you need to do is decide on what your definition of wellness is, and we will work to get you there!
We are here to make health as simple as possible. In this busy world, no one has the time to dedicate half of their day to self-care. We understand that! Through years of experience and working with patients, we were able to develop quick and easy-to-implement strategies that can easily fit into your busy day.
We’re here to support you on your journey to wellness!
That is a great question! One that is best explained using real-life examples.
Based on your last blood work results, there is evidence that shows low thyroid function.
In most conventional medical practices, you will most likely be prescribed thyroid hormone pills that will be taken for the remainder of your life.
Sounds like a pain, doesn’t it?
Having additional Functional Medicine training allows us to approach this issue from a different angle. By taking a look into the nutrient deficiencies that may have caused low thyroid function, we can create an action plan where we can correct low thyroid function often preventing you from having to commit to a lifelong prescription.
Functional Medicine and its focus on a holistic approach to healthcare can save you from committing to lifelong medications for conditions that can be treated with simple lifestyle changes, saving both your health and money!
While we do not prescribe long-term controlled substances for conditions such as chronic pain or anxiety, we can refer you to a specialist.
Medications that we do not prescribe are narcotics that include but are not limited to Percocet and oxycodone or Benzodiazepines such as Xanax and valium.
There are many names by which a practice like Saffron Health is characterized, aside from ‘great care’, of course. Concierge care/direct primary care/boutique style medicine are all used interchangeably. Our membership-based practice shares the same principles of concierge practice in giving easy access to a physician and personalized care. What’s different about our practice is we do not bill insurance, collect insurance copays or charge deductibles which means ZERO COPAYS to you. Every fee is transparent and defined before any services, so you know exactly how much your healthcare costs!
We provide primary care services which are personalized by giving you the time to listen to you and getting to know you. You have direct and easy access to your doctor without having to go through endless phone trees and gatekeepers. We believe in the holistic approach and treat the person as a whole by addressing the needs of mind, body and spirit. You have access to deeply discounted cash pay prices for labs and imaging.