Frequently Asked Questions
When should I page the Doctor?
Page me only for life threatening emergencies: thoughts or plans for suicide, serious medication reactions/allergies. Paging me for other than a true emergency will not result in me calling you back sooner. Plus, picking up your non-emergency pages takes time out of someone else's scheduled visit.
I have an emergency. How do I page?
The number for true medical emergencies only is (301) 219-4081.
What things are NOT emergencies? What should I NOT page for?
The number one reason that I am paged inappropriately is because a patient has run out of medications. This usually happens because he missed an appointment or failed to make a follow-up appointment in time. Another option is calling to see if an appointment is still available this week.
I also am occasionally paged to make routine follow up appointments. This is entirely inappropriate. Please feel free to make an appointment from this web site.
Sometimes I am paged because I have not responded quickly enough to a question left on the voicemail. If your question needs a response before the end of the day, it might have been a question for which you needed an appointment. Otherwise, most of my phone calls are answered in the evening: non-urgent matters may even be answered the next day.
I paged the doctor and she has not called me back
If I havenít called you back, I am either seeing a patient and will call you back or you have paged me for a non-emergency. If so, your call will be returned in a routine manner.
If you have paged me correctly and I haven't called you right back, it is because you paged me for something other than an emergency. I will return your call as soon as I can, normally in the evening or next day.
Should I make an appointment or try to get my medical questions answered/medications changed over the phone?
Answering medical questions over the phone is bad medicine: changing medications over the phone is worse. Often I find myself trying to answer a question without your medical record in hand because the record is left in the office in the evening. A simple "yes" or "no" question can be accommodated, but writing new prescriptions and changing medications needs to be confined to an office visit. If you ask complicated medical questions, do not be surprised if I reply that you need to make an appointment.
Can I get a prescription refill? Why have I run out of medications?
I routinely write prescriptions so that a patient will not run out of medications before the next visit. If you have run out of medications, it is entirely possible that you have missed a follow up appointment and need to make one. Patients who leave the office without an appointment are told to make a follow up appointment soon enough that running out of medications does not occur. If this is the case, make an appointment immediately.
Can I do my follow up appointment by phone?
Medical care is best provided face-to-face, especially in psychiatry where so much of how a patient is doing is communicated non-verbally. It is rare that I can do my best work over the phone. Plus, many insurance companies will not pay for your session if it is not done face-to-face, which would leave you responsible for the entire cost of the visit, not just the co pay or the discounted rate given to your insurance company.
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