- Annual Physical Exams
- Hour-long appointments
- Office Visits for Treatment of Chronic Conditions
- Office Visits for Bio-identical Hormone Replacement Therapy
- Acute Care Visit for Minor Illnesses
- *same day appointments available
- Follow-up Visits for Evaluation of Treatment
- Sports Physicals
- Department of Transportation Exams
- Well Child Check-Ups
- Lab Work & Blood Draws
We accept a variety of payment options. This includes Insurance, Medicaid, and self-pay. Medicaid pay set amounts, based on their policies. We bill insurance, Medicaid on our patients’ behalf.
Charges are based on the same diagnosis and procedure codes used by all health care providers in the United States. (Unfortunately, weight loss is rarely a covered service by anyone, so nearly all weight loss patients will be self-pay. You may, however, be able to use your flex plan money. Or, if you have a condition such as fatigue, insomnia, or hair loss, that may be legitimately covered by insurance.)
- If you are covered by insurance, we will check your policy and find out what your co-pay is, if any. We will collect that at the time of service, and file a claim with your insurance company. Once your insurance pays us, we bill you for the balance, if any.
- When a healthcare provider signs up with an insurance company to be an in-network provider, the healthcare provider agrees to take a discounted amount for services. How much that discount is varies from one insurance company to another, and even from policy to policy within the same insurance company. There are zillions of types of policies, so it is impossible to know what your actual charges will be until we check with your insurer. Since the amount paid varies from code to code, we really don’t know what they will pay until they respond to our claim.
- If you have a “major medical” or “high deductible”policy, and if you haven’t met your yearly deductible, you will be responsible for entire bill (after the discount). If this sounds really complicated, that’s because it is! In fact, health care offices have to hire a special person just to handle these issues, called a biller / coder.
- Once your insurance company has determined what you owe they will inform you with an EOB, or Estimate of Benefits, in the mail. Then you will get a statement from us. We appreciate it very much if you are able to pay in a timely manner. If you need more time, we will work with you to set up a payment plan.
Community Health Centers (for example, Partnership Health Center) receive special treatment under the law, because they are held to certain standards – for example they are required to offer a full spectrum of services including dental care and mental health. Because of this, they are paid a much higher amount for Medicaid/Medicare claims than private clinics, like RCWH. And they do a fantastic job.
Our mission is a little different – for instance, we are more focused on natural therapies and we tend to take quite a bit longer with our patients. When it comes to payment however, the amount we receive from Medicaid is so reduced that it would be impossible for us to stay open if this were our only source of income. (For example, Medicaid pays about one third what Blue Cross / Blue Shield pays for the same service.) Nevertheless, at this point we are committed to helping our patients who are on Medicaid and Medicare, even if it winds up costing us money.
There are millions of us without health insurance or public assistance who have to pay our own medical costs. We understand how hard it is in today’s economy to pay for health care. (Many health clinics, including RCWH, are unable to afford health care insurance for their employees. How crazy is that? Trust us when we say we understand completely how hard it is to be a self-pay patient.) To make matters worse, the law states that it is illegal for us to treat self-pay patients any differently than insurance patients. In other words, whatever we charge on insurance claims, legally we must charge our self-pay patients the same amount. This actually winds up being unfair, since the insurance patients get the benefit of negotiated discounted rates, and obviously those on public assistance pay little or nothing. To even the playing field, we have decided to offer a 10% discount to patients who pay in full on the day of service.
We have priced our services to be as low as possible. One way we accomplish this is by providing labwork as well as exams, right in our clinic. This allows us to offer labwork at very low cost to patients (much less than the hospital, for example). We also offer neutraceuticals and vitamins for sale. We do appreciate it if you purchase these from us, since we know that you getting the best quality for the price and it helps us to keep our other prices down.
When patients do not pay their bill, it obviously costs us money. Sadly, we find it necessary to charge a finance charge of 1.5% per month on unpaid balances.
Labwork costs vary according to test. Because the labs sometimes change their charges, our pricing fluctuates occasionally. Some testing is done in our office, for example rapid strep screens for sore throats, or pregnancy tests. Others are sent to the PAML (Pathology Associates Medical Laboratory). Results are usually available within the next week. Some results, notably cultures which take three to four days to grow, or labwork that must be sent out of state, take longer.
- Special Testing: For our chronic pain patients who are on controlled substances: policies require that we periodically test for substance abuse. Patients will be billed directly by the testing facility. We will be entering into agreements with other specialty labs over the next few months, specifically to test for toxic mold exposure, heavy metals, and food intolerances. With these types of tests, it is very important to use a lab that has a lot of experience in the specialized area.
- Pathology prices: PAP tests, and biopsied tissue collected at RCWH is sent out and examined by expert pathologists. These services are always billed by the pathologists’ office. *You will receive a separate bill from them for these services.
- Imaging Prices: X-ray, Ultrasound, Mammogram, Bone density scans, MRI, CT scans, etc. These services are always billed by the hospital or clinic providing the service. *You will receive a separate bill from them for these services. In addition, you will receive a bill from radiologist who reads the x-ray or scan. For some services (mammogram for example) these bills are rolled into one. Be sure to ask before you have the procedure done so you won’t be surprised. It is impossible for RCWH to keep up with all the prices of services offered at other facilities, so it is best to check with those facilities themselves.
- Specialists’ fees: Any fees or costs incurred by seeing providers outside of RCWH are billed by those offices. This would include the cost of a colonoscopy, for example. This would be billed by the specialist; in addition you might be billed a facility fee from the hospital where the procedure is done.
We provide a clean, comfortable friendly experience at RCWH, but we cut costs by “doing more with less.” We try hard to ensure that you do not spend 20+ minutes in the exam room waiting for your provider to appear. Your provider (Deni) will greet you in the waiting room, escort you to the exam room, and do all of the above with you, on the spot. You won’t have to tell your story twice.
The average physician spends 7 minutes with their patient. Our appointments are scheduled for 27 or 57 minutes, on the hour and on the half hour. (This leaves three minutes for Deni to clean and tidy the room for the next patient.) In order to see the next patient on time, we must address your important questions and discuss our options in a timely manner. If referral appointments must be made, this may need to be done at the end of business hours or by the receptionist after your visit (as you check out and settle your bill).
Prescriptions for medications will be given to you during your visit, or called to the pharmacy of your choice during your visit. Expect Deni to keep half an eye on the clock! This is not because she wishes to rush you, or because she has other things on her mind. (When you are being seen, you are the most important person on the planet.) On the contrary, it is because she wants to be sure we have addressed your most important concerns. If you feel that your problems will take longer than your allotted appointment time, you may schedule an hour long appointment.
We Respect Your Time
At RCWH, we think your time is as important as our time. That’s why we make it a priority to run ON TIME. We all know that the unexpected sometimes comes up. This will be the exception. In order to be seen at your scheduled appointment time, you will need to arrive a few minutes early. Sometimes we have to work in medical emergencies, and this throws us off our schedule. Obviously, health care emergencies can’t be scheduled ahead! If we are running late, we heartily apologize and beg your forgiveness and understanding.
Don’t Be Late!
Because running on time is such an important part of our mission, if you arrive late you will unfortunately miss part of your appointment time. Running on time is a novel idea for health care. We will all have to work together in order to make this great idea a reality!
No Show Policy
- We will call you to remind you of your appointment. Usually, you will have a day (or more) to phone us if you need to reschedule.
- You may cancel up to the day before your appointment with no penalty.
- If you call and cancel on the day of the appointment or you simply do not come, we must charge a $25 fee. We reserve the time for you, we don’t double-book, and therefore it costs us a lot when you don’t show up.
- For Medicaid patients: since the fees paid by these programs don’t even cover our overhead, we simply cannot afford patients who don’t show up. A public assistance patient who no-shows for an appointment will not be rescheduled.