How soon can I get an appointment?

I can usually get you in for an appointment within a couple of weeks – sometimes same day or next day depending on cancellations and scheduling.

What can I expect to happen during an appointment?

When you arrive at my office, you will enter a very pleasant waiting area where you are invited to relax until it is time for your visit. Drinking water, reading materials and toys are provided.  If my assistant, Karyn, is working that day, she may welcome you or I will greet you there at our scheduled time.  Occasionally, I run over a bit with patients who require a little extra time, but I will come out and let you know that.

If you have not already downloaded and completed the New Patient Forms, let me know when you set your appointment and I will have a clipboard and forms with your name on it out in the waiting room for you.

See Before Your Appointment – Maps and Directions

I will invite you back to my treatment room where I will listen to your concerns and ask questions to help me fully understand your health and life circumstances.  Depending upon your individual situation, I am likely then to conduct a physical examination and offer you a treatment that will help address the issues you are experiencing.  We will discuss your diagnosis, other treatment options and recommendations and make plans for future visits or referrals.

See Traditional Medical Methods for a full explanation of the format for most visits.

Can you be my primary care doctor?

Unfortunately, no.  I am not working now as a primary care medical provider.

I urge all my patients to establish with a primary care provider – pediatrician, internist, family doctor or nurse practitioner — to handle their urgent and major medical needs.  I will not be your main physician for conditions like diabetes, heart disease, blood pressure problems, etc., nor do I admit patients to hospitals.  I also do not offer immunizations or blood draws.  I do not perform annual gynecological exams or PAP smears. I am willing to coordinate with your other providers to help optimize your care.

Are you available for after hours calls or concerns?

In general, I do not provide 24-hour coverage or any services during evenings or weekends. Again, this is where your primary care provider can meet your needs.  You may also call 911 or utilize an urgent care center or emergency room if you have emergency medical or mental health problems.  Being a solo practitioner, there’s just not enough of me to be available beyond reasonable office hours.

Are you an osteopath/ osteopathic physician?

I am an M.D., a regular medical doctor, trained in traditional Western medicine. I am not a D.O. (Doctor of Osteopathy).  I do employ osteopathic treatment techniques that I believe may be of benefit to my patients.  I learned craniosacral therapy and osteopathic methods over a period of years through extensive supplemental training. I am skilled in this form of therapy, but I respect the field of osteopathic medicine too much to claim to be  an official osteopath.

Review my education and training.

What should I wear to an appointment?

Treatments happen with the patient fully clothed.  To be most comfortable during a craniosacral or osteopathic treatment session, you may choose to wear comfortable clothing, like sweats or exercise pants, or shorts during the warm season.  You can bring along such items to change into for our session if you are wearing something else when you arrive.  I will ask you to remove belts, items in your pockets, watches and some jewelry.  Thick pants like jeans are harder for me to work through.  You may feel awkward reclining on the massage table in short or tight clothes.  I can cover you with a blanket if you feel chilly.  You will get the most out of a treatment if you are dressed as comfortably as possible.

How long do visits last?

It is my belief that it takes time for us to uncover all that is going on with what concerns you.  That can’t happen easily in a 10 or 15 minute visit, like what we experience in many regular doctors’ offices.  I pledge to you my time and attention so that you won’t be rushed to tell your story and you will have time to receive treatment as indicated.

First visits usually last one to one and 1/2 hours.  For appointments after that, I spend 45 minutes to an hour with you.  If you have special needs and I do not have something scheduled right after your appointment, I may extend our time a little longer.   Not all of my patients want long visits, so please be sure to tell me if you prefer shorter times or if you have to be somewhere right after our appointment.  Visits with children and teens may run shorter, depending on their attention span and individual circumstances.

How many visits will it take for me to get better?

Although the answer to that varies with each patient, I will not tell you that you need to come in for an extended series of treatments before we can determine if my work is helping you.  It is true that it may have taken a long while for your condition to develop and it may take some time for the problems to resolve and the condition to heal.  However, I generally recommend 2 or 3 visits for us to decide if this treatment may be beneficial for you.

Sometimes that’s all it takes – a few sessions and you feel a lot better.  In other cases, a longer period of regular treatments can help you heal more quickly and maintain the health you achieve.  Many of my patients come in for a few sessions when they have a flare up of their problems and then return for a “tune-up” every so often as they need it.  We will work together to establish what is right for you.  But I promise that I won’t ask you to spend a ton of time and money before you know if my services are what you want to continue.

What if you can’t help me?

It is vital that you as the patient give careful feedback about what techniques and treatment help you and what doesn’t work for you.  There are many options to choose from; we will start with what seems most needed for your situation and, by discussing and learning from your responses to our choices, we can modify the course as needed to help you get better.  However, I am not the right doctor for everyone.   I will do my best to serve you in your pursuit of health and wellness.  I will also recommend to you other practitioners and treatment styles which may benefit you.

Will you bill my insurance company?

I am on the panel for a few insurance companies and can bill those directly.  DO ASK me if yours is one of them.  For those who have insurance which with I am not contracted,  my patients pay me at the time of their visit – cash, check or credit card.  A discount for paying in cash at the time of service is included.  At that time, I give them a form that is ready to be submitted to their insurance company and the patients are then reimbursed directly.  Also, I can help with your recovery after a motor vehicle accident or a job-related injury and directly bill the responsible party for you. In cases of significant financial hardship, we may make an arrangement for me to work directly with your insurer.  I can also apply a sliding scale to help limit costs if you have special financial need.

Can I communicate with you through email?  Text?

The best way to communicate with me is by phone.  I prefer that you do not email me because sometimes I don’t get to my email for a couple of days.  You may leave text messages, but I respond most promptly to phone messages.  In general, I will respond to phone messages within 24 hours, if you have notified me of a concern.  For appointment requests, my assistant Karyn will get back to you when she is next in the office (usually two or three afternoons each week).   We will reply to messages left after hours and on weekends as soon as possible during next business hours.

Please note that a down side of texting is that there is no way for you to know if I am on vacation or otherwise out of the office for an extended time.  If I do not respond within a reasonable timeframe, try calling.  I will always leave an outgoing phone message when I plan to be away fo r more than a few days.  

Why don’t you have staff to answer phones, greet patients or handle normal office tasks every day?

Good question!  It has been my choice to streamline my practice and focus my attention on personalized care for each patient. I have opted to try to handle the business end mostly by myself, in order to keep costs down. These savings are passed on to you in that my fees for 45 minutes or longer are less than you would pay at a regular doctor’s office for half that time.  My practice is simple – I am the only clinician you will see.  I do have a wonderful assistant, Karyn, who works a few hours a week and may greet you or phone you if she is working during the time of your visit or call.  She is also the person who is likely to call you back to schedule your appointments.  Otherwise, I am the person who will return your phone calls. Sometimes it takes me a bit longer to respond to your calls because I am busy with other patients or away from the office. If your question is about billing, I do also have some assistance with billing and you may hear from that individual on occasion. My priority is that you get my full attention and time during our appointments.  I do my best to handle all your additional concerns as promptly as possible.

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