Frequently Asked Questions
What's the difference between my primary care doctor's office, urgent care, and house calls?
House calls: Great option if you (or your kid) are sick and would prefer a physician to swing by the house, office, or hotel to check you out. I'm a solo practicing house call physician, so when you call I'm the one who comes by. I don't hire other physicians, nurse practitioners, or physicians assistant to do my work. Your home is your waiting room, and that's pretty cool.
Urgent care centers: Convenient, open after-hours and weekends and have x-ray machines. The provider you see is whoever happens to be on duty and working a shift that day.
Primary care doctor's office: Your medical home. You can make an appointment to see them. They also manage your chronic medical conditions that require monitoring and provide preventive care services (like physicals, immunizations, and cancer screenings).
If you're traveling in Houston or if you're unable to get an appointment with your primary care doctor when you're sick, and prefer to be seen at your home, office, or hotel, give me a call.
What are some things you can treat?
As a general family physician and sports medicine physician, I can treat most of the issues that bother most people. If you (or your kids) get sick, have a sore throat, bad cough, fever, a rash, ear infection, urinary tract infection, I can help you by doing a house call. If you may have an overuse injury, I can help. If you are hurt badly, it gets trickier. While I can examine and order imaging at a facility, it may be better for you to go to an urgent care or ER where they can x-ray and splint you.
If you have a life-threatening emergency (like a heart attack, stroke, or seizure) or a limb-threatening emergency (like a dislocation or a deformed fracture), you need to go to the emergency room and calling 911 is the better idea.
Are you a concierge or direct primary care service?
No, I am not. My medical house call practice is fee-for-service, paid each time I'm called out.
Many concierge or direct primary care practices require a membership fee, which I do not charge, in order to be a part of it. Also, I may not be as available as these practices are. I want to keep medical care affordable for regular people like you and me. I hope the pricing is fair to you.
I have health insurance. Do you accept health insurance?
No, I see patients outside of their health insurance and cannot process claims for house calls.
I can give you an itemized receipt for you to submit to your insurance company, if you choose. They may or may not reimburse you back directly. Please verify your own health insurance benefits, as I cannot guarantee their payment.
My professional fees are straightforward and on par with most doctors' visits or urgent care charges. I charge $200 per patient for a house call, $250 per patient total if the house call requires a procedure, and $275 per patient total if the house call requires multiple procedures. I swipe your credit, debit, or HSA (health savings account) card and then we're done. No confusing bills months later. For safety reasons, I do not carry cash. It's easy.
What about labs and imaging?
I can check for strep, influenza (flu), urinary tract infections, urine pregnancy test, fingerstick blood sugar (glucose), and peak flow for asthma. I am unable to draw blood at the house right now or provide mobile imaging (like x-rays or ultrasound) yet. Depending on the case, I can provide you with an order for you to have these studies done at a facility convenient for you.
I have a family member who is medically very complex. She/He is on a ventilator, has severe dementia, and is incapacitated. She/He is doing fine, but we need a doctor to come to the home periodically and be her/his new primary care doctor. Can you do that?
I know how hard and overwhelming it is to have a family member who has a lot of medical needs. It's hard, it really is. It's even harder when you don't know where to go for help.
When I first started this house call practice, I knew there were a lot of people we could serve. Over the years, however, I have learned that I am not set up to adequately take care of medically complex and vulnerable patients as well as I know they should be. These patients need (and deserve) a well-trained, multidisciplinary team of caring experts who can do the job right; and because of that, I have to respectfully decline the opportunity.
Luckily, we live in Houston in the shadows of the legendary Texas Medical Center and there are a lot of geriatrics, hospice & palliative care, internal medicine, and family physicians who are capable of handling the challenge. If you are lost, send me a note and hopefully I can point you in the right direction.