frequently asked

care essentials information

What is Care Essentials?

Care Essentials by Kaiser Permanente are convenient care clinics that provide nonemergency and preventive health services at affordable prices, right in your neighborhood. Kaiser Permanente members pay only their office visit cost share. Nonmembers pay $165 for all but add-on services.

When are Care Essentials clinics open?

Monday through Friday, 8 am–8 pm and Saturday through Sunday and holidays, 9 am–6 pm.

How do Care Essentials clinics differ from urgent care clinics?
Care Essentials clinics:
Treat nonemergency health care needs, including minor illnesses (such as colds, flu, or strep) and injuries (such as minor cuts, burns, or sprains)
Provide preventive services, including checkups, vaccinations, and some lab and diagnostic testing

On the other hand, urgent care clinics:
Treat illnesses and injuries that are not life-threatening but require care within 24 hours when you can’t see your personal doctor
Typically offer on-site X-ray and imaging services

You can find a more thorough list of Care Essentials treatments and services here.

what and who we treat

I’m not sure Care Essentials provides the treatment or services I need. What can I do?

Click here for a list of treatments and services we provide. If you need treatment for a condition that is not listed, call us at 1-855-235-0491. If we can’t treat you, we will recommend another resource. You can also visit to find a specialist or other facility near you.

Do you treat children at Care Essentials?

Yes! Care Essentials welcomes patients of all ages. We treat children for a full range of needs, including ear infections, pink eye, bug bites, rashes, minor cuts, and urinary tract infections.

Do you offer treatment via phone or video?

Not at Care Essentials, but Kaiser Permanente does.

Get care with a phone or video visit ›
Try an e-visit ›

Can I receive treatment at a Care Essentials clinic if I’m not a Kaiser Permanente member?

Absolutely. We provide high-quality, convenient care, whether you have Kaiser Permanente coverage or not. We welcome members and nonmembers alike and accept self-pay and all commercial health insurance plans. Before your appointment, we recommend checking with your insurance provider to confirm your coverage and eligibility.


Do I need an appointment, or can I just walk in?

For quicker access to care, we recommend making an appointment by booking online or calling 1-855-235-0491 (TTY 711).

You’re welcome to walk in any time we’re open to schedule an appointment in person, though the next available appointment might be later in the day or the following day.

Who will treat me during my appointment?

Every Care Essentials clinic is staffed by Kaiser Permanente board-certified physician assistants (PAs) and advanced registered nurse practitioners (ARNPs), who will care for you during your visit. In some cases, you may be seen by a physician (MD).

insurance and payments

What forms of payment do you accept?

We accept many major credit and debit cards, including health savings account (HSA) cards. Unfortunately, we can’t accept checks, cash, or money orders.

Do I need to pay for my service or treatment at the time of my appointment?

We’d appreciate that. But if you can’t pay at the time of service, we’ll send you a bill.

I’m a Kaiser Permanente member. How much will my appointment cost me?

Members pay only their office visit cost share.

Do you accept Medicare?

We accept Original Medicare (fee-for-service) and Kaiser Permanente Senior Advantage. If your Medicare Advantage health plan is not Kaiser Permanente, you’ll need to seek care with your assigned provider.

Do you accept Medicaid?

We accept Medicaid Open Card and Kaiser Permanente Medicaid members. If your Medicaid health plan is not Kaiser Permanente, you’ll need to seek care with your assigned provider.

Do you accept other insurance plans besides Kaiser Permanente?

Yes. We accept all commercial health insurance plans and as a courtesy to you, we will submit your bill to your insurance provider. We ask for a $25 payment at the time of the visit to cover likely copay or noncovered costs, and will bill you for any balance that your insurance provider does not pay. We recommend contacting your insurance provider to confirm your coverage and eligibility before seeing us.

Care Essentials is also part of the First Choice Health PPO network. If you have access to the First Choice Health PPO network through your health plan, you can get treatment at Care Essentials for in-network rates, typically an office visit copay.

Search for Care Essentials at and contact your insurance provider to confirm eligibility.