FAQ

FAQ 2017-10-16T11:42:04+00:00

We are not a walk-in clinic, but we can generally get you in very quickly for an appointment.  Schedule online or call us at 406-587-0681.

For teens, we  offer a no charge walk-in Teen Clinic every Monday from 3-6pm. More information here.

We offer our family planning services on a sliding fee scale, which means patients may receive discounts based on their income and family size.  Many patients qualify for discounts. We can also help you enroll in any programs you may qualify for to help you cover the costs of services.  Our fees are typically 1/3 less than other clinics in the area.  Some of our services are not eligible for the sliding fee scale and include smoking cessation, mental health services and services for post-menopausal women.

For teens, we  offer a no charge walk-in Teen Clinic every Monday from 3-6pm. More information here.

We receive funding from the national Title X grant, which covers less than 20% of our costs to provide services.  We rely on insurance and patient fees, along with donations, to provide low cost, quality care in our community.

Fees depend on several factors: the type of visit you are scheduling, whether insurance will be covering any of your visit, your eligibility for sliding fee scale discounts, and whether the visit slides. We are happy to answer as many questions as we can.  Please give us a call for more specific information!

Bridgercare receives funding from the federal Title X program, which allows us to slide fees based on income.  Because of this, we must follow their federal guidelines for assessing income.  A partner living with you is considered part of your household.  However, family planning services benefit your partner too!  Explaining this to your partner can open a conversation about contributing to birth control expenses and sharing responsibility.

In the state of Montana, a minor can access health services related to sexual health and pregnancy prevention or diagnosis (this includes birth control prescriptions) without parents being notified or involved.  This also means that we will keep your visits strictly confidential unless you give us authorization to discuss your care.  We encourage open lines of communication between teens and their parents (or a trusted adult) whenever possible!

Many STIs can present without symptoms.  Bacterial infections like chlamydia and gonorrhea take about 2 weeks after sex with an infected partner for an accurate result.  Viral infections like HIV and herpes can take 3 months or more for an accurate result.  We recommend not screening early to avoid a “false negative.”  However, if you are having symptoms of infection or if you were notified that one of your partners tested positive, we recommend being seen as soon as possible accurate diagnosis and treatment.

There isn’t one test that screens for all STIs, and its not routine to screen for everything.   Your medical provider will help you determine what is medically indicated based on health history and risk factors.  You can opt for any available testing you are interested in, but our sliding fee scale is only available for medically indicated labwork.

Some of our tests are sent to an outside lab, with results available within a few days. The clinic will contact you if any results come back abnormal.  You won’t normally receive a callback for negative results, but you’re welcome to call and confirm your result if you don’t hear from us.

Bridgercare is an independent clinic.  We provide similar services, but we do not provide abortion services.  We rely on the same federal grant (Title X) and patient fees and donations to provide sliding fee scale services to patients.

Our medical providers return phone calls throughout the day as time allows.  Often, calls will be returned the same day.  If you are experiencing a medical emergency outside of our business hours, please call Bozeman Deaconess Hospital Emergency Room at 585-1000.

If your prescription is from Bridgercare and you will be picking up at the front desk, you can order online, or call our Refill line (587-0681 ext 4) to order.  We require 24 hours notice to ensure they are ready when you arrive.  To request refills to be mailed, please call during business hours to speak to the front desk.  If your prescription is with a pharmacy, please call that pharmacy to order a refill or to transfer to another pharmacy.  If you need to start a prescription with us,  please schedule!

Call 587-0681 during business hours, or schedule online here.  

Walk Me Through a Visit at Bridgercare…

When you Arrive:

Check in at the front desk.  Please let us know if you need language (translation) help.

Our intake forms collect the following information.  Anything you tell the clinic staff is private, and will not be shared with anyone outside of the clinic.

  • Personal Information: Your birth date, telephone number, mail and email addresses and emergency contact.
  • Income Information:  We will ask your income before taxes and household size to assess you for any sliding fee discounts for eligible services.  Please talk to staff about any concerns you have paying for services.
  • Insurance Information: We will ask if you are enrolled in health insurance or Medicaid along with determining your sliding fee discounts in order to provide the most affordable visit possible. We will determine if you qualify for any additional programs that could help to cover your healthcare costs.

Once you have completed the paperwork and returned it to the front desk, you will wait in the waiting room until your first name is called by a clinical assistant.

Your visit will begin with the clinical assistant, who will collect your medical history and vital signs.

Your medical visit will then be provided by a clinician (RN, Nurse Practitioner, or Physician Assistant.)  It’s important to tell them if you have problems or concerns, including:

  • periods that aren’t normal
  • pain during sex
  • vaginal discharge or discomfort
  • body changes – “What’s normal for my age?”
  • your health – Have you been sick or do you have a serious illness?

Your provider will discuss your concerns with you during your visit.  They will ask:

  • if you need birth control
  • if you or your partner are currently using birth control
  • if you are using condoms

Your provider will instruct you if you need to undress and wear a clinic gown for your exam and where to sit in the exam room.

She will review your medical history and ask more questions.  Remember that everything you tell the staff is private.  Some questions are personal, but honest answers will help your provider to know what care and tests are important for you.

You may have a breast or pelvic exam, depending on your needs.  Men may have a testicular exam.  Tests for sexually transmitted infections (STIs) may be done during the visit, and are based on your sexual history.

Please tell your provider if you are uncomfortable or don’t understand a procedure or tests.  We welcome questions and want you to understand your care!

Now you are done with the exam! What’s next?

  • you’ll get dressed
  • you’ll talk to the provider about your visit

You will get medicine or a prescription to treat an infection if you are diagnosed.  You will also receive a supply of your chosen birth control method, including condoms, if you wish.

The clinician will explain when you should return to the clinic.

Remember that most men and women are nervous about having an exam.  Ask questions, listen to the answers, and let the clinic staff help you through the visit.  Your health is important!

When your visit is complete, the provider will walk you to the front desk.  The front desk will help determine if you have fees for the day and help you schedule a follow-up appointment, if necessary.

After leaving the clinic, if there is something you forgot to ask, don’t hesitate to call.  The clinic staff regularly answers questions!

 

MEDICAL FAQs

Take your next pill as soon as you remember, and use a back-up method of birth control for the next 7 days. (If you are on pills with estrogen and progestin and are on your fourth week of reminder pills, it’s OK to just take your next pill at its scheduled time.  If you are on pills with progestin-only, you do not have fourth week reminder pills.)

If you have had unprotected sex within the last five days since missing your pill, emergency contraception (EC) may be recommended.  Some types of EC are available over the counter and some are by prescription only.   Bridgercare carries all types of EC.  Call Bridgercare to find out what kind of EC is best for you.