How Our Office Works
To schedule an appointment, call (806) 359-4701 and tell the appointment secretary the name of the person who is ill, identifying information such as date of birth and briefly, the nature of the illness. The appointment secretary will then verify the patient in our computer system to ensure that we have the correct patient.
Our friendly office staff answers the phone from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday and the answering service answers at all other times. We do our best to answer the phone promptly but sometimes the call volume is especially heavy-usually the first hours of the day and lunchtime, too.
Bring Your Medications
Bring all your medications or an updated list each time you come to see your physician. The list should include the name, dose and frequency of your medicine.
Your First Visit to Our Office
Plan to arrive 15-20 minutes prior to your scheduled appointment to complete the necessary forms and insurance verification. In the parking lot you will notice a golf cart valet that will take you to the front door if want a ride. Amarillo Family Physicians Clinic is located on the first floor of the building. Check in at the front desk where we will ask you to complete information and medical history forms and we will need your insurance card. To make the most of your office visit, please bring the following:
- Your insurance card
- Your current medications (or an accurate list) including dose and frequency
- Registration and history forms. These are available on our website for you to download and complete before you arrive.
We have a Physician Assistant on Staff
if your doctor is not available you may schedule an appointment with our Physician Assistant, Denise R. Branson, PA-C. A Physician Assistant is trained in medical schools and is licensed by the Texas Medical Board. She is trained to treat most illnesses and write prescriptions.
Methods of Payment
Our office policy requires that the fee for services be paid at the time of your visit. This includes co-pays deductibles, and additional fees not ordinarily covered by insurance. Have your insurance card handy because we will need to verify it every visit. You may pay with cash, check, Mastercard, Visa or Discover. If payment is a problem for you, speak to our friendly team member at the check out counter to discuss this.
What About Lab and Radiology Procedures
Most of our lab tests are processed here, but some tests are sent to LabCorp or Quest. If your lab is sent out, LabCorp or Quest will bill your insurance plan or you. If you return another day for lab work, your insurance may charge another co-pay.
If you are having lab procedure without a physician office visit, you will need to schedule the procedure. Bring your “lab orders" with you. It will contain the specific procedure your doctor needs and a diagnosis.
Your physician will review your x-ray while you are here for treatment. Then a Board Certified Radiologist will read the film for documentation.
When to Pick Up Samples, Forms and Such
You may pick up samples, prescriptions, forms and other items when they are ready at front desk. The front desk is open from 7:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday but closed during lunch on Wednesday. Items are not available for pick up during the extended hours clinic. Remember to give us 2 business days notice for any items you need to pick up. It takes us 15 days to get medical records ready and there is a $10 charge.
Amarillo Family Physicians Clinic, P.A. accepts assignment for Medicare patients. That means that you will be expected to pay in full for office services until you have met your annual Medicare deductible ($162). Then, you will only pay the 20% co-pay that Medicare does not pay. Co-pays must be paid at the time of service. There are a few services that Medicare does not cover that you will need to pay. Let us know if you have a Medicare supplement. There is no charge to Medicare patients for lab services.
How We Handle Insurance
Our physicians are in-plan providers for the networks affiliated with BSA Health System and Northwest Texas Hospital Health Systems, First Care, BlueCross BlueShield, Aetna, and many others. Check your insurance directory for in-plan providers. Always present your insurance card at each visit and tell us if your insurance changes. If your insurance is one of our contracted plans we will accept your co-pay and handle the rest of the billing procedures. We will bill you for fees not covered by your insurance.
Failure to present your current insurance card will result in you being responsible for full payment. Many insurance plans have a filing deadline such as 60 or 90 days after the date of visit so it is important that we have current information.
Your benefits will be substantially different if we are an out-of-plan provider. It is important that you know the provisions of your insurance policy.
- Check for in-plan providers
- Present your card at each visit
- Pay your co-pay at time of service
- Know your benefits
- Follow authorization procedures
Some insurance plans require a referral from your primary physician before seeing a specialist physician. Make an appointment with your family physician first.
If you and your doctor have already discussed seeing a specialist physician, allow 2 business days for a completed referral. If the specialist physician is out of network the referral takes longer for approval. We also need 2 business days for referral updates.
Some insurances also require pre-authorization for services such as MRI, CT scans, mental health visits and in-patient hospital treatment,
Be aware which hospital your insurance wants you to use. Failure to follow your insurance company procedures usually results in denial of payment. Be alert to your responsibilities.
If you have a medical emergency you should go to a local emergency room in order that immediate care may be delivered. Amarillo Family Physicians is not an emergency treatment facility.
If you need to contact a physician after Clinic office hours (8:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday) the answering service will take your message and page the doctor on call. The doctor will return your call promptly.
The doctors request that calls be limited for urgent problems and not for routine matters,
How We Return Your Phone Calls
We are with patients most of the time and not able to take a call directly. However, if you feel you must speak with someone please give as much information to the message secretary as possible. A nurse will return your call as time permits during the day and after appointment hours.
If you have a medical emergency inform the receptionist immediately. One of our nurses will speak with you right away.
How We Handle Prescriptions Refills
We encourage you to look ahead and ask for prescription refills during weekday office hours. Check your medicine supply often and allow 2 business days for refills. Don’t wait until the last minute. If you need a refill, leave a message with our message secretary, who will relay the request to your doctor. The nurse will call you back if the prescription is not renewable. You must see a physician at least annually for the physician to renew your prescriptions. Check with your pharmacy before you go there to be sure your prescription is ready.
Please help us by having the following information at hand when you call for a prescription refill: your name, the doctor you see, the exact name of the prescription , dosage (milligrams, etc.), the name and location of the pharmacy.
If you use a mail order program please notify us 2 weeks prior to needing a re-supply. We will write out the prescription for you to pick up. If you have a form from your company include all your identifying information on the form.
After Hours Care
We are open from 5:00 pm to 8:00 pm weekdays for urgent care. No appointments are made but you must be here by 7:00 pm to be seen. On Saturday you may come to the Clinic for urgent care and minor illnesses beginning at 8:30 am until 4:30 pm. Sunday we also have “walk-in" Clinic at 1:00 pm with the last person taken at 4:30 pm.
Evening and Weekend Clinic is for urgent problems only. Some of the problems we treat during extended hours are: upper respiratory, congestion, colds, flu symptoms, vomiting, diarrhea, allergies, minor lacerations, sprains, minor injuries and other minor illnesses.
You will need to make an appointment during weekday hours with your primary physician for on-going problems. These problems include hypertension, medication refills, depression, anxiety, migraines, chronic back pain and others. The physicians do not do routine medical care during evening and weekend hours.
We are not able to accept new patients during evening and weekend hours. Extended hours are only for established patients.
Payment is expected at the time of service.
The relationship between you and your personal physician has always been a private confidential matter, and we recognize the trust you have placed in us to keep your information secure. We have an extensive written policy regarding the HIPAA privacy rules that you may review while you are here or take home. We will also ask you to acknowledge that we have told you about this.