Frequently Asked Questions

Click on a question below to see the answer concerning our Primary Care program.

For the Hospice Services, FAQ please click here or scroll down.

Q: Who is eligible to receive an in home medical care visit from Housecall Providers?

A: Housecall Providers serves chronically ill and homebound adults living in the greater Portland area. Our patient population includes medically fragile elders, individuals with multiple complex chronic health conditions, and people with physical or mental disabilities. Additionally, the patient must NOT be in need of an emergency first visit, and the patient (or family, if appropriate) must agree to accept our services.

Q: How do I get started as a new patient?

A:

  • Give our Intake Department a call at (971) 202-5500.
  • Our intake coordinators will gather basic information and conduct a brief pre-screening with you over the phone that will include confirming that we accept your insurance info 
  • If our services are appropriate for your needs, our coordinator will send you a new patient application form to complete and return to our offices.
  • Once we have your completed form, you will either be contacted to set up an appointment time or be added to the waitlist for the clinician who practices in your area.
Q: How long will it take to schedule my first in home medical care visit?

A: The length of time before your first visit is scheduled will vary depending on several factors, including:

  • Where you live
  • What insurance plan you have
  • Our clinician availability in your area

Our intake team can give you an estimate as to how long your wait might be, but because things change constantly, it can be difficult to make accurate predictions. We encourage you to begin the registration process early- before a crisis hits, as we are not able to make urgent visits to new patients.

Q: What types of services do you offer?
A: Housecall Providers seamlessly integrates primary care, advanced illness care and hospice services into one unique program, so we can provide the best possible care and support throughout the entire lifespan of our patients. Many of the medical services you’d find in a traditional office-based medical clinic can be performed in the home by our specially trained clinicians. Some of these services include: physical examinations, medication prescription and management, diagnostic testing (such as x-rays, and ultrasounds), lab testing, immunizations, wound care, wart/skin tag removal, chronic disease evaluation and management, pulse oximetry, and many more. Our care coordinators work with patients and their insurance companies to schedule appointments, coordinate with specialists, and order durable medical equipment.
Q: What do you consider to be “home?” Where can a Housecall Providers primary care clinician see me?
A: Wherever you live! We visit patients living in private homes, adult care homes, assisted living and residential care facilities. Call our office if you have a question or need further clarification. Geographic areas we currently serve in the Portland Metro Area: Eastern boundary: Gresham/Troutdale Western boundary: Forest Grove Northern boundary: North Portland/St. Johns Southern boundary: Tualatin, Wilsonville, Oregon City.
Q: What types of insurance does Housecall Providers accept?
A:

  • Medicare and Medicare Advantage plans Providence, United Healthcare, Regence)
  • Medicaid 
  • Most secondary link (Medigap type) insurance
Q: Can I use a secondary insurance policy to cover what my primary insurance does not cover?
A: Yes, Housecall Providers will automatically bill your secondary insurance for any charges that are not covered by a patient’s primary insurance.
Q: Will my provider visits be scheduled regularly or on an as-needed basis?
A: On average, patients are visited about every six weeks to help manage their chronic conditions. Patients may be seen more or less frequently based on their individual needs.
Q: What if I need a visit after hours, on the weekend, or on a holiday?
A: We do not routinely make after-hours or weekend visits, but a clinician is available by phone 24×7. Clinicians take turns managing weekend phone calls so our patients, their caregivers or family members always have access to a Housecall Providers clinician.
Q: Will my Housecall Providers clinician be my primary care provider?
A: Yes. When you apply to be a Housecall Providers patient we ask that you sign a release stating that our clinician will take over as your primary care practitioner.
Q: How do I contact my primary care provider if I have a medical question?
A: Because our clinicians spend all day out in the field seeing patients, the best way to contact them with a medical question is to call our office at (971) 202-5500, and ask to speak to your clinician’s care coordinator. Our care coordinators are in contact with the primary care provider throughout the day, and will be able to make sure they receive your message.
Q: What if I need more than a primary care house call?

A: We have developed a multidisciplinary care model to meet the holistic physical, behavioral, emotional and spiritual needs of our patients and their families and caregivers. Our primary care team is comprised of not only providers (MDs, NPs and PAs) and their care coordinators but registered nurses, social workers, and a spiritual counselor who are here to help you navigate your chronic conditions.

Q: How will I know when hospice care is appropriate?
A: Hospice care focuses on comfort and quality of life rather than curative treatments and is designed to provide support to you and your loved ones during the transition from life to death. If you think hospice might be right for you or would like to learn more, please call our hospice intake team at (971) 202- 5501. You do not have to be a primary care patient to receive hospice services at Housecall Providers.

Hospice Services

Q: When is it time to ask about hospice?
A: Patients should consider hospice care when medical treatments can no longer cure their illness, or when the severity of symptoms is greater than the benefits of treatment. Other indications that patients may be ready for hospice include unrelieved pain, frequent infections, frequent trips to the emergency department, sudden or progressive decline in physical activities, shortness of breath while on oxygen, significant weight loss or difficulty swallowing.
Q: Our doctor suggested hospice. I’d like to know more about what would happen next.
A: You or your provider can contact our hospice and make a referral at any time. Once we receive the referral, we will coordinate a time to meet with the patient and family to discuss and assess the patient for services. Choosing hospice can sometimes be a difficult decision. We honor your choice for the care you prefer and are here if you want to learn more. If hospice currently isn’t right for you, that is OK.
Q: What qualifies patients to receive hospice care?
A: A patient is eligible for hospice services when their illness is considered terminal, meaning their provider has determined they could possibly die within six months if their disease continues as expected. There are also medical guidelines that providers and hospices use to determine eligibility.
Q: Does insurance cover hospice?
A: Hospice is covered 100% by Medicare and Medicaid. Some private insurances may require a copayment or coinsurance. We invite you to contact us for more information.
Q: Can my primary care provider stay involved?
A: Yes, that is your choice. Our hospice physicians and team members are very happy to work closely with your primary care provider to ensure your needs are met. Your provider can choose the level of participation they feel comfortable with.
Q: Does hospice mean giving up?
A: Not at all! Hospice focuses on the patient’s comfort, wishes and continued quality of life, as well as any support family and caregivers need. While care no longer includes curative measures, hospice works with you to provide comfort and to treat your symptoms, such as pain, shortness of breath and emotional suffering.
Q: Our family member is not a Housecall Providers patient. Does hospice accept new patients?
A: Yes, we welcome adult patients who are new to us. We treat all our patients as family and deliver patient-centered care regardless of age, race, religion or complexity of medical needs.
Q: Is hospice an actual place?
A: Hospice brings physical, emotional and spiritual care and support to whatever place the patient calls home. Hospice can be a supplement, with regular visits that include caregiver education. This helps caregivers feel confident in the care they provide. Patients who require care around the clock will need a primary caregiver.
Q: What happens if a patient’s health gets better while on hospice?
A: Sometimes a patient’s health improves with hospice services because of symptom management and the shift in focus to comfort care. Medicare regulations require that the hospice discharge patients whose underlying disease is no longer considered terminal. If the patient would like to transfer to Housecall Providers’ home-based primary care, the hospice team can make the referral.
Q: Other questions?
A: Our experienced intake team gladly answers any questions. Reach them at 971-202-5501 or hospice@housecallproviders.org.