Frequently Asked Questions
What Type of Practice are You?
While we follow traditional guidelines that treat your symptoms, our goal is to optimize your mind, body, and spirit as well. Unlike traditional medicine, we feel very strongly about offering you other alternative therapies that may be less invasive and/or have less side effects. Many health problems such as heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure are associated with poor eating habits, lack of physical activity, stress, obesity etc… At IHC, we know the importance of treating the underlying issues rather than just your symptoms. You can expect to be educated at every visit on nutrition, vitamin supplementation, exercise, and behavior changes. This is ABSOLUTELY fundamental in your plan of care, but has been widely ignored in most healthcare systems. Our mission at IHC is to change the face of healthcare by simply treating people with love, compassion, respect, and understanding by incorporating the therapy that is right for you.
Do you take my insurance?
Integrated Health Concepts participates with many insurance companies. Some major carriers include:
- United Health Care
- Highlands Wellmont Network
If you do not see your plan listed, please contact the customer service number listed on your insurance card to verify that Dr. James Schrenker is a participating provider. Please note that we do NOT accept Medicaid.
We are not responsible for your medical condition, nor are we responsible for the decision your insurance company makes in regards to this condition. Sometimes the insurance coverage you have chosen does not cover what you are seeing us about, or may not cover a test needed to diagnose your problem. Remember, your insurance contract is between you and your insurance company. Their payment to us is on your behalf, for you. When you ask someone else to pay your bill, you are beholden to what they ultimately decide. Even after final payment there may be a balance due, and we expect you to honor this. Obviously, if we can help we will; if there is a mistake on our part we will correct it. When you walk through our doors you are making a contract to pay for our services. The insurance coverage you may or may not have is not my primary concern. We care about you, the individual. We trust you are here to get the help you have not found elsewhere. It is not our intention to spend our time negotiating payment with you or your insurance company. We choose to spend our time helping you, enabling you to attain better health and well being. This is our expertise—this is ultimately why you have chosen Integrated Health Concepts.
How Do I Become a New Patient?
All of our providers are trained holistically by Dr. Schrenker. To become a new patient, please call the office at 423-573-9873 and request a new patient appointment. Your first visit will be with one of our Nurse Practitioners. During your first visit, they will get to know you and your concerns, order any bloodwork they feel necessary, and then schedule your follow-up visit to review your lab results and establish your plan of care. After your follow-up visit, you are considered a patient of IHC. Please note that all of our records and paperwork is done electronically. You will receive a link a few days before every appointment that you will need to complete to ensure we have the most up to date information on you, as well as up to date signatures on your required healthcare forms. If you do not have a way to complete your electronic check-in prior to your appointment, you may use one of our in-house check-in digital pads. This information is mandated to be completed by the patient by CMS.
What Do I Bring To My First Appointment?
At your first visit with us, please be sure and bring the following items with you:
- Your Photo ID (If you are under the age of 18, your parent’s photo ID will be scanned in)
- A hard copy of your medical insurance card. I’m sorry, but we cannot accept written down numbers. We must have a copy of your card. If you do not bring your card, we will offer to reschedule your visit, or offer you a cash price for that day’s visit.
- Your current medicines and supplements in the original bottles
- Your copay. Copays, coinsurance and balances are collected prior to being seen. If you do not have payment for the day’s visit, we will be glad to reschedule your appointment for a different day.
We ask that you arrive 15-20 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment time. To speed up your check-in process, please complete your electronic check-in via the link that will be sent to you via text and/or email prior to your visit.
What is the patient portal?
This portal is a secure online website that gives our patients 24 hour access to personal health information. It allows you to communicate directly with nurses and providers, print care summaries, pay invoices, and see test results. We strongly recommend you sign up for the patient portal by calling our front office to receive an email invitation to join. Please note that you must use the email link sent by our staff to set up your portal access so that you are linked to your active patient account. Due to HIPAA and privacy guidelines, please do not send questions through your personal portal regarding your other family members. Those message will be deleted and portal access restricted. Should you need access to another family member’s portal, if you are on their HIPAA, our front office staff can assist you.
What is your financial policy?
PAYMENT IS DUE AT TIME OF SERVICE – Integrated Health Concepts accepts personal checks, VISA, MasterCard, Discover and American Express for payment on accounts. Payments can be made via statement, patient portal or in the office. Patient balances are billed immediately on receipt of your insurance plans explanation of benefits.
WE ACCEPT MEDICARE AND MOST COMMERCIAL INSURANCE. Please check with your insurance to verify that we accept your particular coverage. It is always the patient’s responsibility to know if our office is participating with their plan. We also accept personal checks, cash, all major credit cards or money orders for payment of balances due by you Regarding Insurance We may accept assignment of insurance benefits after your first visit. However, we do require either co-pay or coinsurance percentage of the bill to be paid at the time of service. The balance is YOUR responsibility whether your insurance pays or not. We cannot bill your insurance company unless you give us the correct insurance information. Your insurance policy is a contract between you and your insurance company. We are not party to that contact. If your insurance company has not paid your account in full within 60 days, the balance will automatically be transferred to your account as due from you. Please be aware that some, and perhaps all, of the services provided may be non- covered services and not considered reasonable and necessary under the Medicare Program and/or other medical insurance. In the event that your insurance coverage changes to a plan that we are not participating with we do offer a discount.
Regarding Medicare: Medicare UGS only covers 80 percent of the billable charge. Therefore, leaving 20 percent the patient’s responsibility which is DUE at the time services are rendered unless prior arrangements have been made.
Regarding Self Pay Patients: Self-pay accounts are patients without insurance coverage, patients covered by insurance plans in which the office does not participate, or patients without an insurance card on file with us. A discount of 20 percent is given at check out. As always, payment is DUE at the time of service. Extended payment arrangements are available if needed. Please ask to speak with a billing coordinator to discuss a mutually agreeable payment plan. It is never our intention to cause hardship to our patients, only to provide them with the best care possible and the least amount of stress.
Regarding Non-Sufficient Fund Checks: The charge for a returned check is $40 payable by cash or money order. This will be applied to your account in addition to the insufficient funds amount. You will be placed on a cash/credit only basis following any returned check. Please note, the check will need to be paid before the next visit.
Regarding Collections: We provide every effort to work with you on your account balance. However, communication is key! Our practice utilizes emails, text message reminders, phone calls, statements and personal letters. Once we feel those efforts have been exhausted and the account has a balance that is 90+ days old, a final demand of payment will be mailed to you. If we do not receive payment within 15 days of that letter, you will be sent to collections and dismissal from the practice. Once you have been sent to collections, you are automatically dismissed from the practice. Being dismissed from the practice for nonpayment DOES NOT absolve you of you bill. You will still be responsible for payment.
What is your cancellation policy?
In order to be respectful of the medical needs of our patients please be courteous and call IHC promptly if you are unable to attend an appointment. This time will be reallocated to another patient who is in need of treatment. This is how we can best serve the needs of all of our patients. If it is necessary to cancel your scheduled appointment we require that you call one (1) working day in advance. Appointments are in high demand, and your early cancellation will give another patient the ability to have access to timely medical care.
What is your no-show policy?
A “no show” is the term we use when a patient misses an appointment without canceling it within one (1) business day in advance. Unfortunately, “No-Shows” inconvenience those patients who need access to medical care in a timely manner. A failure to present at the time of a scheduled appointment will be recorded in your medical chart as a “no show”. The first occurrence will result in a warning letter. The 2 and 3rd occurance will result in an administrative fee of $25.00 will be billed to your account. This charge is NOT payable under insurance and you will be responsible for the charge prior to any treatment. The 4th no show will result in dismissal from the practice.
What happens when your office has to close due to weather or other circumstances?
If our office is closed due to weather conditions or other circumstances beyond our control, we make every effort to reach our patients. This will be done via our automated system. You will receive a call, text and an email, based on the information provided by you that we have in our system.
Do you charge for completing forms for me?
Requests for completion of several types of forms and correspondence will require payment of $20.00. Examples include disability forms, letters/correspondence requested from patients, insurance companies or third parties. Appointments may also be necessary as well. If they are, you are still responsible for the $20.00 form fee and any copays you have.
Do you charge for a copy of my medical records?
Fees for reproduction of medical records are as follows:
$15.00 for up to 20 pages
$20.00 for 21-40 pages
$30.00 for 41-70 pages
*If you are transferring care to another provider, the records will be sent as a courtesy to your new physician after a medical records release has been received.
How do patients communicate with Nurses and Providers?
Our phones are answered by our front office staff from 8-5pm Monday through Thursday and from 8am-12pm on Fridays. If you should have a clinical question, your call will be transferred to the nursing line. Please leave your name, date of birth, pharmacy and the reason for your call and the nursing staff will return your call within 48 hours. Please understand, we utilize the voicemail so this enables the providers and nurses to spend time with patients in the office. Please do NOT leave multiple messages. We also utilize the patient portal for patient communications. We urge you to please sign up. In the portal you can directly message ANY staff member including providers. Portal messages will be answered much more quickly than phone messages.
How do you deliver test results?
It is IHC policy that we will discuss results (labs/imaging etc…) during your follow up. IF there is a need for a phone call, the nurse will reach out to you once the provider has made the assessment and the plan of care has been decided. You can always view your test results via the portal once they have been published. If you should have any questions, please make a list and bring them with you to your follow up and they will be addressed at that time.
What is your Cannabis Policy?
James H. Schrenker, M.D. is registered in the state of Virginia to write a certification for the medical use of cannabis. In order to be given a written certification for the medical use of cannabis, individuals must be current patients of the practice and reside in Virginia. The patient must have a diagnosis that supports its use, solely based on the discretion of Dr. Schrenker. Prospective medical cannabis users must first follow standard procedures for becoming new patients. No certifications will be given by our physician extenders. Once Dr. Schrenker and the patient decide medical cannabis is the best solution for the given medical diagnosis, a certification will be issued and a patient/provider contract signed. IHC is in Tennessee and therefore we must follow the Tennessee state regulations for controlled substances. Examples of controlled substances are Lortab, Xanax, Gabapentin etc. Tennessee classifies cannabis as an illicit substance, and do not allow for the legality in Virginia to overshadow the illegality in Tennessee. Therefore, if cannabis is detected on a standard urine drug screen, regardless of any valid certification held by the patient, we will follow our conformation policy and send the sample to a reference lab. If it is determined to be present all controlled substances will be appropriately weaned and said patient will not be prescribed controlled substances through IHC. It is the intent of all of our providers to practice the at highest level of care. This includes prescribing medications, including cannabis, that best meet the needs of an individual patient.
Still have questions? Contact us.