An Employer’s Guide: Comparing Sherpaa with One Medical

What is Sherpaa and what is One Medical?

One Medical is a traditional brick and mortar primary care practice located primarily in San Francisco and NYC that offers online scheduling and same or next day appointments. There’s a significant membership fee for individuals ($149 per year) or companies (~$40,000 for 250 employees) to join and each visit then costs employees market prices for a traditional primary care visit. Their main sources of revenue are a membership fee to individuals or companies plus traditional reimbursements from insurance companies. The more visits they do, the more revenue they generate from your employees.

Sherpaa is an online medical practice powered by our full-time physicians who diagnose and treat 70% of primary care issues virtually and, for the rest, personally arrange care with local specialists or facilities. It is traditional, relationship-based primary care, just online and available 24/7 from anywhere. Our mission is to prevent the unnecessary 70% of traditional office visits, like those that happen at One Medical, to make healthcare convenient and less expensive. There’s no membership fee to join Sherpaa and our only source of revenue is a per employee per month fee only for the employees that regularly use Sherpaa. That fee covers the cost of primary care for those employees and prevents unnecessary claims.

How much does One Medical charge employers per year?

For a company of 250, it costs the employer ~$40,000 in annual fees. For a company of 150 employees, it costs ~$24,000.

What does $40,000 a year get an employer with Sherpaa?

Roughly 275 primary care visits with Sherpaa’s doctors at no cost to employees. This is enough to cover 2 visits for the 60% of employees who use Sherpaa as their primary care doctors. These 275 online primary care visits prevent ~$68,000 in costs for primary care, urgent care, and ER visits.

What does One Medical’s $40,000 a year fees get an employer?

The ability for employees to walk through One Medical’s door. It does not cover the cost of doctor visits and their add-ons. Employees must pay their own medical bills.

Should One Medical pay companies for lead generation? Yes.

One Medical has deals with brokerages and HR platforms like Sequoia and Justworks that give One Medical away for free to employees of companies that use those services. One Medical pays those companies for patient lead generation. An employer is no different. One Medical should be paying employers for their employees’ healthcare dollars. A company has employees who spend money on healthcare. One Medical wants their money. It’s old-fashioned lead generation.

How much will your employees spend on traditional healthcare per year?

50% of employees spend $0 to $100

40% of employees spend $100 to $5000 or less

10% of employees spend more than $5,000 a year

Half of employees will not need a doctor in a given year. And half of your employees will use a reasonable amount of healthcare. But do they already have a primary care doctor? And are they willing to switch their care to One Medical’s doctors?

Say you have a company of 250 employees. In reality, 10-20% of them will use One Medical.

What does a $40,000 One Medical membership fee cover?

These are from the actual line items in a One Medical $40,000 proposal for a 250 person company.

#1: One Medical Membership for each eligible employee

One Medical charges employers an $11-$13 PEPM fee for all eligible employees, whether or not they use it. Companies can choose to include dependents age 14 and over. If 20% of employees use One Medical (this number is probably quite realistic), this costs you $800 per employee per year and the employee pays for each visit out of their own pocket. Compare this to the often waived $149 fee each employee would have paid if they signed up as an individual.

If x% of employees use One Medical, this is the membership cost to employers per user:

10% = $1600

20% = $800

30% = $533

40% = $400

50% = $320

60% = $266

70% = $228

80% = $200

90% = $178

100% = $160

#2: Access to high-touch primary care

Annual membership fees simply pay for access or an affiliation, not care. But in-person office care is where One Medical does a good job. It’s a well-designed traditional doctor office that offers online scheduling and same or next day appointments. That’s surely an upgrade to traditional primary care. ZocDoc also offers same and next day appointments with primary care doctors at no cost to you or your employees. One Medical also bills like a traditional doctor’s office. The more diagnoses they make, the more tests they do, the more your employees pay them. When doctors charge you more for doing more, your doctor’s economic interests are competing against yours.

#3: 24/7/365 Telehealth

This service is powered via phone or video by non-doctors for limited, simple conditions for 24/7 real-time nurseline-like care. One Medical does not charge your employees for each use of this service.

#4: Access to all offices nationally

One Medical is operating in 6 cities: 26 offices in the San Francisco area, 9 offices in NYC, 2 offices in Boston, 3 offices in LA, 3 offices in Chicago, 4 in Phoenix, and 6 in DC. If employees who use One Medical regularly travel to these cities and need medical care during normal operating hours, this could be valuable if they are within a convenient distance from one of their practices in another city. But for those remote employees who don’t live or work near a One Medical practice, One Medical is irrelevant to them.

#5: Access to Women’s Health Services

These are services provided by a family practitioner or physician assistant. They are not gynecologists nor obstetricians so they will not offer services for pregnancies. Most working-age women already have a gynecologist.

#6: Travel Health Consultation

This service costs an employee $50 plus the few hundred dollars for the cost of a limited range of vaccines. Anyone can enter their itinerary here and the CDC will offer recommended vaccines to be administered in any doctor’s office.

#7: Patient Financial Navigation

There are no details to be found on any of One Medical’s materials that describe this service.

#8: Open Enrollment Communication and Support

This is an opportunity for One Medical to explain their services and attempt to drive engagement and employee revenue toward One Medical. This isn’t really a benefit to be included in an employer’s annual fees.

#9: Rise Nutritional Coaching

Rise is an app One Medical acquired that anyone can download. Your employees will need to pay a $15 to $90 a month, non-insurance reimburseable in-app purchase to use in-app nutritionist services.

And for an extra cost:

  • Annual on-site flu vaccination program ($18 per employee per year. Others can also visit your office to administer flu vaccines)
  • Annual on-site biometric screening ($60 per employee per year)
  • 11 On site care days per year: ($25,000 per year)
  • Virtual-only telehealth care (an additional cost to the employer and available by request…see above for a description of their telehealth service)
  • Building an on-site center: Custom pricing

What is not included in your One Medical fees?

  • Free 24/7 physician care for your employees that prevents 70% of in-office primary care, urgent care, and ER visits from happening.
  • Real-time insights from a dashboard an employer can log into that shows how many employees were using One Medical services with anonymous details about actual usage. You should know at all times the value you’re getting from your investment.

How does Sherpaa add value to employers and employees?

All fees paid to Sherpaa covers the cost of our full-time, dedicated doctors’ care and expertise so it costs employees nothing to get primary care. Sixty to 70% of employees use Sherpaa each year and we prevent 70% of in-person primary care, urgent care, and ER visits your employees would have previously had to pay for out of their own pocket. And employers get a real-time dashboard to see how many of their employees are currently using Sherpaa, how many cases were created, and what types of cases.