Qliance, an operator of health care clinics in which members pay monthly fees for primary and preventive care, is expanding operations in the Seattle area with a new clinic slated to open in Tacoma this October and an existing primary practice in Mill Creek now operating as an affiliate of the company. Backed by Amazon.com founder Jeff Bezos, comedian Drew Carey, Second Avenue Partners and others, Qliance also said that it is exploring new locations near Everett and on the Eastside of Seattle.
Qliance doesn’t operate like typical health care providers, bypassing the traditional insurance providers and offering unlimited visits to a primary physician. It charges a monthly fee of $49 to $89, boasting “unhurried” office visits and 24-hour telephone access to physicians. There are no limits or restrictions on pre-existing conditions, and the company says the costs are typically 20 to 50 percent less than more traditional insurance-based systems.
Qliance’s growth comes after the company hit a rough patch last year, cutting staff because it had not been able to open clinics as quickly as it would have liked.
Last April, the company raised $6 million in a deal led by Bezos Expeditions, the venture capital arm of Jeff Bezos.
“As Qliance grows to meet the demands from groups for a larger regional footprint, we remain committed to building primary care practices that share a common philosophy and commitment to putting the patient first,” said Garrison Bliss, co-founder and chief medical officer of Qliance, in a statement.
The company — which operates clinics in downtown Seattle, Kent and Mercer Island — serves about 100 customers in the Seattle area, including Becker Trucking, Tri-Tec Manufacturing and Glacier Fish Company. In Tacoma, companies such as Tacoma Screw, Pacific Grill and California Closets plan to offer the Qliance plan to employees.