We are so happy that you have joined us, and look forward to learning about you, your health goals and needs. Here is some useful information to help you get used to the “Direct Primary Care” style of medicine, so that you can get the most from your membership!
First, at the heart of DPC is simply a doctor patient relationship, as it has always been. It may take time for you to realize that you are a real person here, and that we have the time you may need or want to figure out how you can achieve your goals. Some visits may be simply to touch base and follow up, others may be longer to set up a plan of care.
Included in your membership (in other words, at no additional charge) are office visits, illness visits, check ups including annual exams and sports physicals, and EKG exams as needed. Follow up can be in clinic, or via telephone check ins or visits, and communication via text messaging. Communication is encouraged; take your time to find out how you best communicate. Note that some prescriptions are only done at in person visits; we will let you know.
If you find yourself thinking you want to call, but don’t want to bother us, please call! We are aware of the natural courtesy that many patients have, and appreciate your feeling this way, but it is truly much easier to help you get well when we know how you are doing.
Laboratory testing can be done at wholesale rates with blood drawing in clinic. It is a bit more complicated when insurance coverage is used; these draws we refer to the Quest draw stations (in various Safeway markets) or to Salem Hospital.
Orders for xrays or other imaging are sent to Diagnostic Imaging, Salem Hospital or other radiology facilities with an effort to find the most convenient for you. There are a number of facilities that offer better rates for patients paying directly. We will do our best to watch out for your budget!
Consults are requested as needed. We ask that you make every effort to go to these appointments, because they help with your care and take a fair amount of time to set up.
Simon, RN, is in clinic Tuesdays and Thursdays (on the other days of the week he is running his crossfit gym!) Tuesdays and Thursdays are therefore good days to have lab drawn, any recommended IV or injection therapies done, consult re: exercise or paperwork such as referrals or prior authorization requests. Common injection therapies are Vitamin B12 injections and testosterone as prescribed. Common intravenous therapies include glutathione therapy and some nutritional infusions such as magnesium and the Meyers.
‘Prior authorization’ (PA) insurance paperwork is truly frustrating and silly for both you and us. However, we are sensitive to the fact that patients often pay a great deal for these insurances, and have little left in their budgets to actually purchase medications they need. It usually takes about a week for the paperwork to run through the insurance company system, and it may be a good idea for you to buy a week or so of the medication while you are waiting. Also, please be aware that we cannot guarantee that your insurance company will agree to pay for a particular medication. It is frustrating, but a fact. This is why we believe that health savings accounts are the best way to handle this sort of expense. We hope to carry some particularly needed medications in clinic (such as inhalers), so stay tuned.
A number of supplements and products are available in clinic at a discounted cost. You must be in financial good standing to be able to purchase at the discounted price. These products include high quality supplements through Neurobiologix (see Neurobiologix.com), as well as CES units (Cranial Electrical Stimulation units), and the remarkable Protandim (LifeVantage) products. More information about specific products is available on our website, and in clinic as well as being included in your welcome packet.
You are able to use the Perfectio infrared device for skin care (as used by Oprah!) once you have had instruction in its use (schedule an appointment with Dr. Helman). Neurofeedback sessions can be scheduled with TOVA at $20
(this is a test that lets you see progress in improving your brain’s function.