Letter from the doctor

Dear Patient,

I am happy to introduce you to my practice. New Horizons Primary Care was born out of deep desire to practice medicine with  respect for the patient and  community. I wanted only positive things for myself and my patients. I realized that corporate practice of medicine by non physicians, where a doctor is reduced to a "provider" does not foster an environment of healing. So I quit the corporate medicine in 2013 and started my own solo practice. And, it has been going very strong thanks to patients who brought in more patients by word of mouth. Thanks to excellent office staff who put patients interest before their self interests and endless support from my family and support in community and above all my belief in God.

New Horizons Primary Care

We chose this name, because practicing medicine was something natural to me. But running a business that paid the bills was totally new thing. Unlike, a salaried position here I am responsible for both my patient's health as well as a responsibility to put food on the table for my family (both my organic family and my extended family of employees of this clinic). But I have tremendous optimism and see this as the model every physician in this country must follow. It is a new beginning, and hence we called this New Horizons Primary Care.

We chose artistic rendition of sunrise as our logo. The font is from  "ubuntu" font family with a strong focus on "human-ness" and community.

 

What we are not!

Primary care is such a challenging field. I am blessed to be in this field which focuses on the patient and provides an integrated view and better clinical diagnosis. It is very hard to define what a good primary care is. So let me first clear out some of the things I currently do not do.

  1. I am not a pain management doctor.  Pain medications have larger cons than pros. Pain medications are to be used only for short term for symptomatic treatments. If pain medications become a habit, you need to get set up with pain management doctor who can help help you wean off these medications and also can make sure regimen you follow is safe. I am not an expert. So I do not pain management.
  2. I do not treat pregnant women. Once again, most ( or close to hundred percent) clinical trials are done on adults and not on pregnant women. So my advise to the patient is to be extra cautious while taking medications while being pregnant. Since that is not an area I have specialized in, I request patients to get set up with an Ob/Gyn during the course of pregnancy.
  3. I do not treat patients below the age of sixteen.  My specialization is Internal Medicine. I see patients above the age of sixteen.

What we are!

Available: 

We pride in making ourselves available. If you are already set up with us, you can get your appointment within 48 hours when you need one! We also provide routine labs in house so that you do not have to spend time going to outside labs.

Caring:

Our staff work in a setup with care takes precedence to everything else. We use system solutions to increasingly improve ourselves. Please continuously provide feedback to me. I will work on it.

Uptodate:I am board certified in Internal Medicine. I also regularly participate in medical education to keep myself updated. I believe in doing a correct diagnosis to fix issues rather than treating you to symptoms. 

How I work?

Chronic Issues:

In the first meeting, I elicit a detailed health history from you and start working on a plan for you. The time I spend on you  personally , as well as on your previous documented history , on your first visit is generally 40 minutes. I may not be able to finish a care plan for you either because you have too many issues (more than 3 issues)  or because some lab results are pending. In such a case, I request you to come back again after a short gap. (typically a week, a month or three months as appropriate) ; You must follow up those appointments. Unless you follow up those appointments, I will not be able to complete your care plan.

Once the care plan is complete, you will receive it in your email through a secure email, if you request for it. Then onwards you must follow those appointments. Please do not ask me to do refills for a year or two. I will only do refills as agreed on the care plan.  My methods are extremely efficient in reducing errors, increasing prevention and reducing hospital admissions. For follow up appointments, my office typically spends 25 minutes.

Acute Issues:

If you have acute issues, please book an appointment using my online calendar. I promise to see you within 48 hours  and most of the times the same day. The acute visits are restricted to 15 minutes. Please do not merge your chronic issues with your acute issues.

No shows:

No shows are bad in two ways. I pay my staff a reasonable salary whether there are patients in the clinic or not. I also pay rent, utilities, license fees, and various taxes. I do not want to double book to ensure patients get the time they need. So, I have provided my schedule online. If you book your appointment, there are multiple reminders (text, email and sometimes voice) and you can cancel the appointment up to 24 hours before the appointment. If you cancel within 24 hours and if you are a no show, I will charge a no show fee of $50. 

Prescription Refills:

I do not do prescription refills outside office visits. Every patient is unique and there no medicines that do not have side effects. If your care plan dictates that you must be seen in three months, your prescription will be done for a period of three months. Many medicines even the ones who you have been taking earlier have newer monitoring requirements added every day.  Prescription reconciliation has to be done every time we send a prescription to the pharmacy and this process forces physician to treat every refill as a new prescription. If all these monitoring requirements are not adhered to, a serious harm can be done to the patient. So in order, improve safety and reduce costs for prescription reconciliation, I club prescription reconciliation with your office visit. Please bring all the bottles of the medicines you take to your every office visit. Only prescriptions I do fill for an year is birth control pills when you have signed the consent with my office.

Payment Policy

All the payments are due at the time of service.These payments are copay and deductibles told by your insurance plan to you. If you do not know your copay and deductibles and coinsurance, call your insurance. Our office can not provide customer service for your insurance plan.

Insurance as a payer

If you want me to bill your insurance, you must provide me correct primary insurance. I do not bill secondary insurance; You must ask your primary insurance to do a crossover. If no crossover is done and if no payment is made by your secondary insurance, you must pay your bill and file your claim with your secondary insurance yourself. Also, if you have a commercial insurance, you must declare this at our office without fail. Using, free and reduced prices under our self pay or public benefit programs is considered as "insurance fraud" .

Even though all the payments are due at the time of service, we give a grace period of thirty days if you think that your insurance must be given a chance to pay. We submit the claims to the insurance you provided, within a week of your office visit. If no payment is made by the insurance within thirty days of your visit, we send you a bill to you in secure email. You may either pay the bill in full, or make your insurance pay. If no payment is made even after forty five days of the office visit, we send your bill to an outside agency to collect it for us. The outside agency charges money for this service. So there will be a convenience fee of $25 added to all the bills which are past due for more than forty five days.

What insurance do I accept?

Almost every insurance, except some notorious abusers of patient trust. The list is short and can change based on the patient feedback. But please do not assume that my acceptance of your insurance as a validation that you will not get a bill. Insurance is too complex and your contract with your insurance is the best place to figure out who pays. So if in doubt, call your insurance and ask if they would pay the bills submitted by my office. If they do not pay, follow up with them and do not ask me to submit the claim in "correct" way. It is an insurance tactic to delay payment. Do not fall for it.