Frequently asked questions
What is an Annual Physical?
There is a difference between a routine office visit and a physical exam and your insurance company is very particular about this. The Affordable Care Act details what is considered Preventive Services. Here's a good rule of thumb: If you discuss symptoms at your physical you may be subject to a copay and deductible.
Are Physicals Covered by Insurance?
Please call your pharmacy first and speak to a person when you need a prescription refill, not our office, even if you think you have no refills remaining. You may find that you do have refills available. If this is not the case, the pharmacy will contact our office.
This is the most efficient way for you to renew your prescriptions.
If you use a mail-order pharmacy be sure to request refills at least 2 weeks before your prescription runs out. Again, you should first contact your mail-order pharmacy directly when you need a refill and they will contact our office.
If you are using a mail-order pharmacy for the first time we recommend setting up your profile with them before we send electronic prescriptions, or you will need to mail paper prescriptions to them.
Make sure you are up to date on your office visits. Many medications require periodic visits or blood level monitoring.
What is an Office Visit?
Most appointments will be office visits. This is an opportunity to discuss new or existing problems, prescribe and review medications, order necessary procedures, and orchestrate treatment/consultations with specialists.
As a courtesy, Friendswood Family Medicine will bill your health insurance. However, the patient is ultimately responsible for all fees incurred for services rendered. If the primary insurance does not pay within 60 days of the visit, the remaining balance will be billed or charged to the patient or responsible party.
There is no guarantee, stated or implied, that all services or procedures will be covered by the patient’s insurance. Friendswood Family Medicine does not know the intricacies of every insurance policy and how they may or may not adhere to the tenants of medicine. It is the insured’s responsibility to know their insurance benefits and guidelines.
If you have a current condition, it can be addressed during your initial visit. This does make the initial appointment more expensive but once established, your long term wellbeing will be the focus of your care.
What is the difference between a physical and an office visit?
We would like to help our patients understand the difference between an office visit and a physical. This is especially important when we submit a bill to your insurance company for that visit. This will help you get the right service and help us serve your needs as best we can. When scheduling an appointment, our office tries to calculate the time you need with the provider and whether you need a physical or an office visit.
Most of the time, patients are seen for an office visit.
An office visit is an appointment time to discuss new or existing problems. The questions and exam will focus on the problems discussed. This may include prescribing medications, ordering additional tests like blood work or x-rays, in-office procedures like an EKG, referrals to specialists, or discussing other treatment options.
A “physical”, "preventative health visit”, or a “wellness exam” is a thorough review of your general wellbeing. The provider will perform a complete physical examination and make recommendations concerning your health. This may include general recommendations regarding diet and exercise, age appropriate immunizations and cancer screening exams such as a pap test, prostate or breast exam and lab work.
We hope you find this information helpful. We want to provide you with the highest quality medical care possible. If you need further information regarding this, please contact our office