How can I make an appointment to see a cardiologist at Cardiac Associates?
In order to be seen by one of our cardiologists we advise that you call our appointment scheduling line at 301-548-7603. If you were asked to see a particular cardiologist in the practice, we make every effort to get you on their schedule as soon as possible. However, at times, the wait to see the particular cardiologist may be too long. Then we would schedule you to see the next available cardiologist if your current condition cannot wait to be addressed.
Do I need a referral from my primary care physician to see the cardiologist?
This really depends on the kind of health insurance you have. Some insurances require that you get a referral from your primary care physician (PCP), others do not. We ask that you check with your health plan. If you do need a referral, contact your PCP for the referral. We will need a copy of the referral at the time of your initial appointment.
What if I have an urgent cardiac problem and need to be seen immediately? Does the practice accommodate walk in appointments?
In case of a medical emergency or a matter that requires urgent evaluation we recommend you call 911 or go to the nearest hospital. We do not take walk-ins but we do make every effort to add you to our office schedule. Sometimes, if you are willing to see any physician or PA/NP in the practice, we may be able to get you in the same day or the next day. If the situation can be addressed by a nurse, we can add you to our nurse's schedule. If the nurse does think that your situation must be addressed immediately by your cardiologist, he/she will get in touch with your cardiologist or a covering cardiologist.
What should I bring with me during my first appointment?
During your first appointment you will need your Government ID, health insurance card, method of payment to pay for co-pays, a referral form from your primary care physician (if needed by your insurance), any recent blood work that was done, and any relevant tests that were done by your primary care physician or a prior cardiologist. We also highly recommend bringing a list of active medications that you take including any over the counter medications, herbals, or supplements.
What usually happens during my first visit?
The first visit usually involves a detailed history and physical exam by your cardiologist. An ECG is also performed at the start of the visit. By the end of this visit, your cardiologist will formulate a diagnostic and treatment plan for you in order to help determine what is causing any symptoms you may have. Most of the diagnostic tests are performed at our office. For tests not performed at our office, we will refer you out to get them. Due to health plan prior authorization requirements we may not be able to do tests until they are approved. Also, please note that 2 or more diagnostic tests may not be done on the same day due to current health plan constraints.
Do I need to have a form of payment for my appointments? How do I get billed?
We recommend that you bring a credit card or personal check to pay for any copayments you may be responsible for after your appointments. We usually first bill your insurance for tests and visits. If there is any residual payment you are personally responsible for, you will get a bill in the mail that may be paid via check or credit card and mailed back to us.