Wellness exam, physical, chronic care visit. If you’re confused about the differences among these terms, you’re not alone. The services performed at each of these visits are distinct. And deductibles and co-pays vary depending on the type of insurance you have.
At Town Center Family Medicine, our goal is to help you understand the different types of office visits we offer so you know what to expect. Here are descriptions of each one, as well as the services provided and what insurance may or may not cover. These are general guidelines only. Your insurance company’s coverage might be different, and it’s important to know your benefits prior to scheduling an appointment. We encourage you to familiarize yourself with what your insurance plan offers. Visit your insurance company’s website for details.
The difference between medical services is sometimes hard to understand. As a physician practice, FFPC does not control these differences. Our reimbursement is based on the coding system that insurance companies use to describe medical work. For example the coding system classifies a physical exam and medication refill as two separate services. Think of it this way: you wouldn’t expect to make a restaurant reservation for three people, and then bring a fourth person for free. Or have a plumber come to fix a leaky sink and install a dishwasher for no extra charge. The same is true for medical services.
For your convenience, the provider may combine two types of services at one visit — a Well Man Exam and a chronic care visit to refill blood pressure medication, for example. Many factors determine if we are able to do this at a particular visit, how well a medical condition is under control, a new more urgent problem is present and the general health of the patient is all a consideration. However, because these are two different services, there would be two separate charges. We may collect two co-pays at the time of your visit and submit two charges depending on your insurance benefit.
Providers are taught to examine literally thousands of physical signs—from knee reflexes to heart sounds. When conducting an exam, the doctor relies on your personal medical history in combination with any current symptoms or problems. Sometimes, specific symptoms such as a heart murmur or rash will be the actual diagnosis. Your medical history is always the first important consideration.
Providers are specially trained to evaluate the usefulness of tests and preventive services and help you decide which ones are right for you. We offer advice on immunizations, X- rays, blood tests, and a host of other special procedures. Generally, testing is based on your age, health history, and risk factors. We rely on information from the United States Preventive Services Task Force to guide our recommendations.
A patient-centered medical home is a model of care where each patient has an ongoing relationship with a personal physician who leads a team responsible for that patient's care. The physician-led care team provides for every patient's health care needs and coordinates care across the health care system. View the "What is the Medical Home?" video by the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative. Learn More >>
Fairfax Family Practice Centers and our patient-centered medical home approach to patient care was hightlighted in the Chicago Tribune. Read the Article>>