Frequently Asked Questions
Do You Take Health Insurance?
Because I do not want to be restricted by insurance in providing the best personalized care for you, I don’t accept any form of medical insurance or Medicare/Medicaid. However, I can provide you with an itemized bill that includes ICD-10 and CPT codes necessary to file with your insurance company (Medicare excluded) for reimbursement. You may also use pre-tax dollars from a Health Savings Account (HSA) to pay for your consultations.
Can You Be My Primary Care Provider?
I do not provide primary care services. I am happy to communicate with your primary care provider to coordinate your care. I work as a functional medicine consultant in conjunction with your current health care team and am not a replacement for your primary care physician. I require all new patients to have a primary care physician to cover emergencies and routine care and screening.
What Conditions Do You Treat?
I provide guidance for many health conditions including:
- ADD, ADHD
- Autoimmune Disorders
- Brain Health and Memory
- Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes
- Diet and Nutrition
- Digestive Health
- Food Sensitivities
- Gluten Sensitivity
- Heavy Metal Toxicity
- Hormone Imbalances (non-hormonal approach)
- Mold Exposure/Mold Toxicity
- Multiple Sclerosis (MS)
- Neurologic conditions
- Parkinson’s Disease
- Prenatal Preparation
- Skin Conditions
- Stress and Sleep Disorders
- Thyroid Conditions
- Weight Loss
- and more…
What is Your Treatment Approach?
While I am trained as a conventional M.D. and have my prescription pad, most patients come to me seeking a different approach to regain their health, and not just mask their symptoms. I seek to find the root causes of illness and optimize the body’s healing capacity by addressing diet and lifestyle factors, nutritional deficiencies, and other underlying causes of imbalance. I use a combination of Functional Medicine and Ayurveda to understand the interaction of your genetic makeup with your lifestyle and environmental factors and provide you with the tools to create health and vitality.
What is Functional Medicine?
Functional Medicine is a patient-centered approach to medicine. A trained practitioner addresses the whole person, including genetic, lifestyle, environmental and family histories to find and treat the root cause and shift the focus away from simply treating the symptoms.
The Institute for Functional Medicine defines it as “a personalized, systems-oriented model that empowers patients and practitioners to achieve the highest expression of health by working in collaboration to address the underlying causes of disease.”
What is Ayurveda?
Ayurvedic medicine (“Ayurveda” for short) is one of the world’s oldest holistic (“whole-body”) healing systems. It was developed more than 3,000 years ago in India.
It’s based on the belief that health and wellness depend on a delicate balance between the mind, body, and spirit. Its main goal is to promote good health, not fight disease. But treatments may be geared toward specific health problems and restore balance. According to Ayurveda, health is not just the absence of disease, it is a state of complete wellbeing in mind, body, and spirit.
An Explanation of Our Financial Policy
I am passionate about what I do and have a calling to provide the highest quality health care possible, investing years of additional and continued study beyond conventional medical training. Just as my offerings are unique, my financial policies are also different from mainstream medicine.
Why I Do Not Accept Insurance Assignment
While I understand the financial challenge this presents to some patients I have chosen not to bill insurance directly for the following reasons:
When clinics bill insurance companies directly, the doctors are required to become participating providers allowing the insurance company to determine which services they will and will not provide, and how much they can charge for those services. Insurance companies generally do not prioritize preventive or wellness services, but rather are heavily invested in the conventional model of health care that primarily relies on drugs and surgery. Services such as nutritional counseling and stress management are not the norm in the conventional model.
A participating provider must also agree to accept the fees the insurance company establishes, regardless of whether the fees are reasonable or applicable to that practice. In general, these established fees cover short visits rather than quality care. In addition, participating providers are required to accept discounted fees for their services. And while the actual cost for doctors to provide services continues to rise, the percentage of reasonable fees that insurance payments cover is declining. To cope with the requirements of being participating providers by keeping their office visits very brief and overbooking, so that they can see many patients within a given timeframe.
In order to take the time to get to know you and the factors that play role in preventing you from achieving optimal health and deliver a personalized plan versus a cookie cutter protocol, I cannot practice within the insurance network model. I do my best to keep all of my fees as reasonable as possible.
Why I Charge For Lab Follow-up Consultations
In follow-up visits, I spend significant time analyzing your case as a whole and discussing your results and personalized plan with you. While it is relatively simple to inform a patient that her mammogram is negative; it is entirely different to discuss the results of more complex functional evaluations and to recommend practical lifestyle and dietary strategies that may help to prevent breast cancer. Preventive and proactive healthcare takes considerable time and expertise versus merely reporting results.