Scheduling Tips/Appointment Tips:
- Book your appointments in advance
— This ensures that you are scheduled in the appropriate time period and also that you can be scheduled for a time that works best for your schedule
— We recommend scheduling your next check-up upon checking out from a visit in the office
— Please schedule physical appointments at least THREE months in advance (our schedules tend to book up very fast, especially for wellness exams, so please allow adequate time for these appointments to be scheduled)
- Arrive 10-15 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment time
— This allows us to make sure that we have complete and updated demographic, insurance, and HIPAA privacy information
- If you need to be seen on the same day– please call the office as early in the day as possible
— Each day we do keep multiple appointment spots open for patients that are ill or injured and need to be seen on the same day. These spots may book up quickly, so it is best to contact us early in the day. If we are not able to see you on the same day, we will always offer the next available day.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: What is the difference between a well exam/complete physical and a check-up?
A: During a complete physical you will discuss anything that would be considered a preventive measure. Any time you are in the office for a wellness exam you will be given a waiver to sign, which fully explains the things that will be discussed during the exam. A regular check-up is a visit where you will discuss any ongoing issues that you may have already been experiencing.
Q: Why am I getting charged for a copay for my yearly well exam?
A: Most insurance companies are now paying 100% for a well exam. If you come in for your well exam and discuss any other issues that are ongoing/chronic, you may be charged for a regular check-up, as well as the well exam. If this occurs, you will be charged for your copay. To prevent this from happening, please carefully read the waiver that is provided during each wellness exam visit.
Q: Why are wellness exams important?
A: Well exams are important to your overall health because this is the time to discuss and be tested for any routine screenings. Tests that may be ordered include cholesterol checks, glucose checks, a colonoscopy, a mammogram, a pap, etc. If you are generally healthy and do not already have conditions that require these tests more frequently, a well exam is a good time to discuss testing, so that we can determine if there may be an underlying issue.
Q: Will I be charged if I cancel or miss my scheduled appointment?
A: Yes, under certain circumstances you will be charged for a missed or cancelled appointment. As of August 1, 2016, it is now our office policy to charge a fee of $25 if you cancel your appointment in less than two hours of the scheduled time. We do understand that occasionally situations are out of your control and appointments cannot be kept. In that instance, please contact our office as soon as possible to make us aware that you need to cancel. If you need to cancel and it is less than two hours prior to your scheduled time, the fee may be waived if your situation is emergent.
If you miss your scheduled appointment, you may be charged a fee for this as well. If it is your first or second missed appointment, you may be charged a fee of $25 for a check up, follow up, or sick visit. If your missed appointment was a physical, pap, office surgery, pre-op exam, or any other procedure, you may be charged a fee of $35. After the second missed appointment, if a third visit is missed within a 12 month period, you may be charged a $50 fee. Missing a fourth appointment within a 12 month period may result in a dismissal from our practice.
Q: Why do I need to provide my driver’s license/photo ID when coming in for an appointment?
A: The main reason that we scan driver’s licenses, is to help with fraud prevention. By scanning your photo ID into your chart, it allows us to be sure that we are seeing the correct patient, and so that no one else can come into the office and claim to be you.
Q: Do I need to pay my copay at every visit?
A: Yes, you are contractually obligated by your insurance company to pay your copay during every office visit. If you are being seen for a well exam or procedure, we may not collect your copay, as these services may be covered 100%. If you come into the office for a visit that is NOT a procedure, you will be asked for your copay. As of August 1, 2016, if you are not able to pay your copay on the same date of service, you may be charged an extra $5 fee. If you come in for a visit and do not pay your copay, you may pay later on the same day. We also understand that certain life events may prevent you from being able to pay for your visit on the same day. In that instance, please ask to speak to our billing department so arrangements can possibly be made.
Q: Why am I asked to present my insurance card at visits, when no changes have been made?
A: It is our office policy to update every patient’s information on a yearly basis. If we have not scanned a copy of your insurance card in over one year, you will be asked to present the card. Also if it is the start of a new year, you will be asked for the card. Most insurance companies provide patients with new insurance cards yearly, and occasionally some of the numbers on the card may change. The change may be with an ID or group number, or possibly your copay. Your insurance plan may still be the same, but we need to be certain that we have all of the correct information from the card. If we do not have the correct information, your medical expenses cannot be paid, and therefore, you may receive a bill.
Q: Am I able to pay my balance online?
A: Yes, in order to pay your balance online you will need to be active on the patient portal. To become active on the patient portal, you will need to obtain your “activation code” from our office. The patient portal can be accessed from this website, by clicking the link, “Patient Portal”.
Q: How do I request a prescription refill?
A: In order to request a prescription refill, please contact your pharmacy. The pharmacy will then contact our office to obtain the refill. If you choose to contact our office regarding the refill request, please choose the correct phone option and leave a voicemail for our nursing staff to refill the requested prescription. You may also submit refill requests through the patient portal, if you have an active account. Regardless of how you request your refill, please allow for at least 24-48 hours for this to be completed.
Q: Why am I told that I need to be seen in order to get my prescription filled?
A: Whether you are on a maintenance medication, a pain medication, or just something short term, you may be required to be seen to receive refills. Not only so the provider can be sure that you are doing well, but also to follow certain DEA regulations. Providers are required to monitor patients on a regular basis to maintain optimum care. Their medical license may be compromised if they do not follow these guidelines. The frequency of your visits will be determined by the provider, based upon the type of medication and also based upon your health status.
Q: If I call into the office with a question, what should I expect the response time to be?
A: Typically responses are provided within the same business day. The urgency of the matter will determine how quickly the provider responds to your question. Our computer system does allow our staff to mark different levels of urgency, so that the providers can respond appropriately.
Normal messages are addressed within up to 24 hours.
Priority messages are addressed on the same business day.
Urgent messages are addressed within 2 hours.
Our staff members are trained to determine the urgency of messages.
Q: Why should I use the patient portal?
A: The patient portal is extremely beneficial for creating a secure, easy way to communicate with the office. Occasionally our phones are very busy, making it difficult to reach someone. When using the portal, you can send us a message at your convenience and we will be notified that the message was received in our office. Once received we can either respond or direct your message to the appropriate staff member or provider.
The portal is also very helpful, as it allows you to access portions of your own medical record. You can either print or download information for your own records, or to take to one of your other providers. If there are documents or results that are not listed within your account, you can always request that we forward the information to you.
Also, you may conveniently pay your bills, update any demographic/insurance information, schedule/cancel/reschedule your own appointments, and request medication refills.
Q: How do I sign up?
A: In order to sign up for the patient portal, you will need to obtain your “activation code” from our office. You may either call our office to obtain this, or ask for a printed copy at your appointment. Once you have obtained this code, you will visit the “Patient Portal” section right here on our website. You will then follow the direction for creating a new account.