January 2, 2010
Institute For Medical Wellness State of the Practice for 2010
Kind of corny.
But why should only our presidents and governors have all the fun! Besides, what I write below is factual and truthful, unlike most political speeches, regardless of party, and this state of the practice newsletter will be given without the use of a teleprompter ;)
So here goes.....
My fellow Americans, Wellness Plan members, patients, newsletter subscribers, and anyone and everyone else interested in achieving better health and wellness, I am happy to bring to you the The Institute For Medical Wellness State of The Practice 2010.
Two years ago, in 2008, I was elected, um, scratch that, I founded the Institute For Medical Wellness to provide healthcare like it used to be, without insurance, government, or other third party intrusion. While the transition has been a true learning experience, by the response I have received from my patient's and the community, it is one I have never regretted. I am happy to report that by bypassing the traditional third party route of healthcare, and instead dealing directly with you, we have been able to drastically decrease our overall operating budget, which allows us to continue to offer and expand our services at truly low costs. I am also happy to report that we are not 12 trillion dollars in debt and our budget is fully balanced. Take that Washington, D.C. and Trenton!!
I would now like to share with you some of the proud accomplishments since our founding in 2008.
*Same day appointments are the standard, with new patient visits available same or next day
*60 minute Wellness exams focusing on wellness and illness prevention
*Zero copay Traditional Wellness Plans- a much less expensive version of Concierge or Boutique practices, and now available with monthly payment options
*Greater than 90% of Wellness Plan patient's continue to re-enroll year to year.
*20% growth of patient's enrolled in our Traditional Wellness Plan
*Welcoming back of many patient's who returned to our practice after leaving during our 2008 transition, after they sampled traditional third party healthcare delivery
*Expanding Wellness network affiliates- from Naturopathy to Fitness, Massage and Acupuncture, more choices are now available.
*Increasing number of subscribers to our free email newsletter
My professional objective in founding The Institute For Medical Wellness is to offer the absolute best care - without compromise, and to serve as your primary advocate for health and wellness by combining holistic care and traditional old-fashioned values with true modern day medical expertise. My primary goal is to make certain that our attention is solely focused on YOU, not your insurance or some government bureaucrat.
In today's economy, providing this type of healthcare can be challenging. Many businesses are reducing services to cut expenses. But I have always been a contrarian, so at The Institute For Medical Wellness, I take a different approach. I prefer to expand and make more services available, some of which I will mention below.
1) New more easily individualized Wellness Programs.
Last year, in my eagerness to offer many different wellness programs, the choices became a bit confusing, even to me. So starting in 2010, wellness programs will be re-organized in a friendlier way. The Institute For Medical Wellness network affiliates will now be offering individual A-La-Health and wellness programs, which can be purchased separately, or better yet, added to our Traditional Wellness Plan. If added to our Traditional Wellness Plan, you will also receive 20% off all supplements purchased from our office.
2) Our new Healthy Weight Program is now available.
This physician supervised weight management programs main focus is on achieving a healthier weight, curbing hunger, while achieving optimum nutrition. It is ideal for treating diet related disorders including high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, among many others.
Each individualized program will consist of:
-Full initial evaluation by Dr Horvitz- medical and diet history, review of labwork to determine your metabolic needs, initial measurements and goal setting.
--Follow-up to review labs and start on program.
---An individualized starter package of nutritional supplements geared to your medical history.
----Monthly supplies of Dream protein
-----Twice-monthly office visits to check on your progress and make any necessary adjustments.
*Big discount if combined with our Traditional Wellness Plan.
*Discount of $75 if combined with our 8-Hour Optimum Results personal training program.
*Discounts also available for partners joining together.
*Healthy Weight Programs offered are for 3, 6 and 12 months.
For more information please visit our website here.
3) Nutritional and dietary supplements available at the Institute For Medical Wellness
Nutritional supplements have become a bigger part of The Institute For Medical Wellness. This is not due solely to my health and wellness beliefs, but more to the demands of my patient's. The nutritional supplement industry is not regulated as strictly as pharmaceuticals and there are thousands of supplements available at stores and thru the internet. This is both good and bad. The good is in the greater innovation and less expense in bringing a product to market. The bad is there are less mechanisms in place that make sure you are truly getting what you are purchasing. So at The Institute For Medical Wellness, we only carry supplements from very reputable manufacturers who have put their products through very strict procedures to be certain that you get what you buy. If you want more proof, most of the products we sell have been or are presently being used by myself or my family. Click here for a list of the different supplements we have available. Also note that discounts are available with certain A-La-Health programs.
4) Genetic testing for Breast cancer, Ovarian cancer , Colon cancer and Melanoma are now available at The Institute For Medical Wellness.
I have teamed up with Myriad Genetics and Laboratories, a company designed to help patients and healthcare professionals understand how genetic testing can help identify individuals at risk for hereditary cancer. There are ways to reduce your risk or overcome cancer in your lifetime. If cancer runs in your family, hereditary cancer testing may be an important step for you. Click on this link and take the quiz to see if testing is right for you.
5) Medical Records
Keeping an accurate medical record is one important part of your care. Back in 2004, ahead of most physician practices, I transitioned from paper to electronic health records. While it occasionally makes me pull out what little remaining hair I have, electronic health records also have many positives. One is their ease of access. When we had paper records, the time involved to keep them updated was very costly, both in time and materials. Not as much with electronic records. So we can now offer Wellness Plan patients one digital copy of your medical records per year for personal use if securely emailed as a pdf file. If you prefer a hard copy on a CD, a fee of $15 is required. For all other patients, the fee is $15 for a digital copy and $25 for a hard copy on CD. Please note, fees are different if records are required for legal, transfer or insurance requests.
6) Telephone consults now available
While many patient's take it for granted that doctor's will prescribe treatment over the phone, it is not always good sound medical practice, nor the best for patient care. But many patient's in my practice have strongly requested these consults. Thus, I am adding phone consultations to the services I offer, in the hope that when used in the proper circumstances will be of benefit to you. Phone consultations simply consists of phone time spent with you evaluating your health complaints, and prescribing treatment. For example, if you are feeling ill, but stuck at work or home, you can arrange a phone consultation.
The following fees will be charged dependent upon the time spent on consultation or if treatment is ordered or prescribed:
5 minutes or less without treatment prescribed = No charge
10 minutes or less with treatment prescribed = $45
11-15 minutes with treatment prescribed = $75
Any consultation that would require more than 15 minutes requires an on-office evaluation. If you are seen in the office for the same illness within one week of your phone consult, you will receive $25 off your in-office follow-up. Phone consultations will most often be used to evaluate and treat recurrent illnesses such as sinusitis or urinary tract infections. This service is not available to new patient's, nor to any condition Dr Horvitz feels requires an in-office evaluation. To schedule a phone consult, please call our office at 856-231-0590. A valid credit card or a bank debit arrangement is needed for this service.
These fees are not applicable for the following:
* Quick follow-up phone conversations about a recent office evaluation.
* Wellness plan members, as these services are already included as part of your plan.
* As Medicare rules are vague on telephone consults, this service is not available to Traditional Medicare patients.
* Routine requests such as pharmacy refills, appointments or non-physician requests.
7) Help with insurance reimbursement
We realize that medical billing can be very frustrating, which is one of the many reasons my office stopped working with insurers. But just as medical billing is frustrating to my office, it can be equally frustrating to my patient's awaiting insurance reimbursement. So in 2010, we will now be submitting paid office charges to your insurance to help you with reimbursement. For this process to run smoothly, please make sure we have an updated copy of the front and back of your health insurance cards, as well as your signed authorization.
8) Beginning January 1st, 2010, there will be a $25 charge added to your first office visit each calendar year, with a $40 maximum per family. The reasons for this fee is as follows.
-Upgrading our medical records systems due to the stricter government regulations concerning these systems.
--Increased insurance submission costs. This charge will hopefully be more than offset by any insurance reimbursement you receive by having your paid office visit fees submitted electronically to your insurer.
---Complying with the government's new privacy payment plan law due to take effect in 2010.
*Please note that this fee is not applicable if you are enrolled in our Traditional Wellness Plan or for Traditional Medicare patients.
*This fee is applicable irrespective of whether you have insurance coverage.
9) The Institute For Medical Wellness can now be found on Twitter at http://twitter.com/IMWHorvitz
I anticipate utilizing twitter for notification of office updates including interesting health, medical and wellness information, availability of flu vaccine, and inclement weather closings. Don't worry, you will not be tweeted about what I ate for lunch today, although I can say, it was probably low in processed carbohydrates, very filling, and very tasty ; )
I would like to thank everyone for their confidence in my professional abilities and referrals of new patient's to the practice as well as to the Wellness Plans. If you are presently in the Traditional Wellness Plan, and refer a new patient to this plan, you will receive 1 month added on to your plan for the first referral, and two months added on for every other new patient you refer. Just my way of saying Thank You for your confidence!!
It is always nice to get good feedback. Good feedback tells me that I am definitely moving in the right direction! So please check out the recent patient testimonials sent to our office.
My New Years Resolution is that you allow The Institute For Medical Wellness to help you make 2010 a healthy and prosperous year!!
This concludes the Institute For Medical Wellness State of The Practice 2010 newsletter. I will now leave the stage quickly, and you will not hear the media pundits restating over and over again what you have just read. Anyhow, it does not matter to me what others say about The Institute For Medical Wellness. As my primary goal is your individual health, the only one that matters when you are in my office, is YOU!!!
To Good Health and a prosperous 2010!!
Steven Horvitz, D.O,
Board Certified Family Practice
Founder of The Institute For Medical Wellness
128 Borton Landing Road, Suite Two
Moorestown, NJ 08057