Independent Physician Association

An IPA defined

An Independent Physician Association (IPA) is an organization of eye care doctors within a state. It is typically structured as a Limited Liability Company. The purpose of the IPA is to supply managed vision benefits for employers to offer their employees directly. Doctors can offer plans and contract with employers at attractive reimbursement rates which are controlled by the IPA.

Who owns the IPA?

Owner Doctors are independent physicians who buy a share in their state IPA and become its owners. It licenses Vision Care Direct administration and software from IECP on a yearly basis. The management and administration of the IPA will be handled directly by its members.

How is an IPA formed?

Contract with IECP for development.

How is an IPA structured?

Participating Providers – Independent physicians who participate in the Vision Care Direct managed plan but have no ownership in the IPA.

Owner Doctors – Independent physicians who buy a share in their state IPA. These physicians control the direction of the IPA.

Board of Managers – An elected group of Owner Doctors who conduct all operations and directional functions of the state IPA.

How is an IPA funded?

The IPA Operations Account is funded by initial doctor membership fees, Preferred Vendors Program fees, and participating doctor dues. This account covers expenses such as legal and professional fees, consulting fees, phone calls, meetings, travel expenses, printing, and marketing.

The Vision Care Direct Plan Claims Administration Account contains funds that CANNOT be co-mingled with any other account, according to state insurance laws. The plan member’s money is simply held in this account until they use it for their prepaid packaged vision care.

Both of these accounts are controlled by the state IPA.

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