Pediatric care policies can change from office to office, and we understand that. Below, you will find most of our policies and procedures. Please note that this is not a complete list, but rather the most asked-for policies.
Please make yourself aware of these policies before your visit.
PANC Vaccine Policy
We want to ensure the highest level of health and safety for the children we care for in our practice. That means that all children should be fully immunized. The only medical appropriate exceptions are for children with an allergy to a vaccine component or immunodeficiency syndromes in which some vaccines are contraindicated.
In the last twenty years, there have been outbreaks of diseases in the United States that could have prevented by vaccines. Many of these outbreaks have led to infections in unvaccinated children, because they are at greater risk for these diseases. While the recent epidemics of measles and pertussis (whooping cough) infections have primarily affected unvaccinated children, they also disproportionately affect children with developmental disabilities and those receiving chemotherapy for cancer, who are medically vulnerable due to these chronic illnesses.
Well-funded, well-publicized anti-vaccine groups have continued to recycle discredited pseudo-scientific studies and spread alarming misinformation about vaccines. This has led to confusion even in those who are strongly supportive of vaccines. We understand that those families who are reluctant to vaccinate their children only want to want to do what is best for their children and are fearful that the stories might be true. We believe that the anti-vaccine movement has done a great disservice to these children and families.
Even if you are not planning to vaccinate your child, we hope to discuss your concerns in our clinic. We would be more than happy to share resources we trust with you to help you answer questions you may have. You can explore the links available on our family resources page to get started.
PANC Vaccine Policy Statement
We firmly believe in the effectiveness of vaccines to prevent serious illness and to save lives. We also believe that the families who visit our clinic want their children safely protected from infectious diseases.
We firmly believe in the safety of our vaccines.
We firmly believe that all children and young adults should receive all of the recommended vaccines according to the schedule published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Academy of Pediatrics.
There is no medical reason to alter or delay the schedule. Vaccines contain only a small number of unique immune stimulators. We are exposed to far more immune stimulators on a daily basis than if all of the vaccines combined.
We have spent hundreds of hours educating parents. We believe that our education has been solidly founded on scientific evidence.
We do not believe that vaccines cause autism or other developmental disabilities.
We firmly believe, based on all available literature, evidence, and current studies, that vaccines do not cause autism or other developmental disabilities. We firmly believe that thimerosal does not cause autism or other developmental disabilities. In addition, thimerosal has been removed from almost all vaccines.
We believe that it is important for all children to be vaccinated.
We firmly believe that much of the protection of vaccines comes from herd immunity. Most vaccines produce immunity in 90–95% of children. The remaining 5% who do not produce immunity are protected by herd immunity. This means that a highly vaccinated population limits the spread of most infections – even to those who are not vaccinated – by preventing infection spreading from one person in the midst of the large population or “herd.”. As more people choose not to vaccinate, herd immunity is eroded, putting everyone at greater risk.
We plan to keep seeing unvaccinated children.
There is a growing trend among pediatric practices to decline seeing patients who are not vaccinated. At this time, we plan to continue to see unvaccinated children in the hope that we can help families to understand the importance of vaccines and their safety, and ultimately convince them to vaccinate their child.
There may be a time in the future that we will also follow this national trend and ask these families to seek another medical provider.
If you decline recommended vaccines, your provider will ask you to complete the American Academy of Pediatrics Refusal to Vaccinate Form, which will be scanned into your child’s medical record.
Rules for Underimmunized Patients and Families:
If your child is ill with a possible vaccine-preventable disease, please enter through the building’s side door after alerting us you have arrived.
Symptoms of a vaccine-preventable disease may include:
- Eye drainage
A mask may also be required for your child if coughing is a symptom.
There will likely be additional tests ordered for your child if they are at risk for a serious vaccine-preventable disease. In some cases, if it is deemed likely that your child is suffering from a vaccine-preventable disease, your child may need to be seen in the ER rather than in our clinic.
Please do not bring your child into the office if you suspect they may have a vaccine-preventable disease without observing these precautions. It is our duty to protect all of the patients in our waiting room — especially those who cannot be vaccinated due to age or medical contraindications.
Please let us know if you have any questions about this policy or about vaccines and their safety.
Your PANC provider team
Payment at Time of Service
Our office requires payment or insurer specified copayment for an office visit at the time of the visit. If we have to bill you for your copay, there will be an additional $10 billing service charge.
Main Phone Line 970.484.4871
Our office has multiple phone lines. However, the main phone line is the number to call for the quickest response. If we call you and a number other than 970-484-4871 comes up on your caller I.D., please call us back at the 970-484-4871 number. If you call back on one of the other lines, there may be no one to answer your call after hours, and it may be forwarded to our voicemail.
After Hours Services and Phone Calls
Our practice offers after-hours services in case of an emergency. Call 970-484-4871 and leave a message. Once you hang up, the on-call provider will be paged and receive your message. The provider will then call you to determine the next steps. Next steps may include treatment recommendations over the phone phone, a referral to the ER or an urgent care center, or a follow-up appointment in the clinic the following day.
After-hours calls prior to 10 p.m.: $10
After-hours calls after 10 p.m.: $14
The after-hours phone call fee will not be charged if the patient is seen within 48 hours of your call.
Lengthy after hours calls: up to $25
This charge covers the time taken by the physician to return your call, the dictation of the call for the chart, pharmacy calls if needed, and any follow-up procedures that are required of the nurse or any other staff member on the next working day.
Long-distance pharmacy phone calls (any time of day): $10
Out-of-town phone calls (any time of day): $10
Our phone system requires you to leave detailed specific information. When you call, please speak slowly and clearly. Repeat the contact phone number twice so we are able to accurately return your call.
Our nurses have voicemail and messages can be left for them throughout the day. They receive a large number of calls every day, so please be patient when waiting for a return call. If the situation is critical or you need to make an appointment, please inform the receptionist so that your needs can be addressed immediately. The nurses not only receive calls with questions from patients and parents, but also calls from labs, other offices, and pharmacies for refills.
When leaving a message for the nurse, please speak clearly and be sure to leave your phone number, name, and spelling of the child’s first and last name.
If you are calling regarding results for tests not performed in our office, please leave the child’s name, the date of test, and the lab or facility at which it was performed so that the nurses have all of the information readily available when returning your call.
Please be aware it may take 72 hours for any forms to be completed.
For routine medication refills, please contact your pharmacy first. They will contact us directly for refill requests. When leaving a message for medication refills, the nurses will need:
- Name of the child
- Spelling of their name
- Name of the prescription medicine
- Dosage information
- Name and location of the pharmacy
Prescription refills will be called in:
Monday – Thursday, 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
If an ADD/ADHD, depression, or anxiety medication refill is needed, please give 48 to 72 hours of advance notice. The prescription may be picked up from the office in 2–3 days or mailed to your home if you provide us with a self-addressed, stamped envelope.
Medication recheck visits are performed every six months. Yearly well-care visits are recommended as well and can also serve as medication recheck visits.
Daycare, Camp, School, Sports Forms and Immunization Records
Forms that need to be filled out by a nurse can be left at our office for completion and then picked up in 2–3 days. If you provide us with a self-addressed, stamped envelope, we will mail the form to you or the facility. Some forms can also be faxed to the facility.
Parents — please read the requirements for physicals on camp and sports forms. Some forms specify that the child have a physical exam every 12 months. If you need a form filled out, and it indicates the need for a physical exam within the last year, we cannot sign the form unless your child has had a complete physical exam within that time period.
Note: If you need a form filled out the same day, we are happy to accommodate, but there will be a $20 rush fee. Simply bring the form to our office with your payment, let us know it is a rush form, and we will get it done by the end of the business day.
Well Care Physicals and Sick Appointments
Well-care physicals typically take 30 to 45 minutes. Most daycare facilities, camps, and junior high and high school sports require a physical every 12 months. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends yearly physicals for children from two years old to 21. Visits are more frequent for children under the age of two.
Well-care physicals consist of a complete physical exam that includes:
- A developmental evaluation
- Measurement of height and weight
- Hearing and vision screening
- Blood pressure check
- Scoliosis check
- Neurological exam
- Immunization update
Depending on the age of the child, we may also check for anemia and perform an autism and developmental screening. You and your care provider will discuss diet and sleep patterns. You will also have an in-depth conversation regarding safety and behavioral issues.
With adolescent physicals, discussion topics may also include high-risk behavior, sexuality, peer pressure, school-related issues, and depression. Additional screenings for anemia, high cholesterol, and depression are performed for teens.
Sick appointments are scheduled with a 15-minute time slot by default, but if your child has multiple symptoms, problems, or concerns, please let the receptionist know when you make the appointment so that more time can be reserved for their visit. We want to make sure the doctor has enough time to address all of your concerns without feeling rushed.
Our clinic schedule is not set up for walk-in appointments. Please call ahead to set an appointment time. We have an unscheduled visit charge of $15 in addition to your copay. If you have an appointment for one of your children, but bring a sibling whom you would also like to be evaluated, there will be an unscheduled visit charge in addition to the copay for each child. Please call ahead to schedule the visit for the sibling to avoid this charge and assure that both children can be seen.
Appointment Confirmations, No Shows, and Late Arrivals
Because not showing up for an appointment takes time from the schedule which cannot be filled by another patient, please call to cancel a visit you do not intend to complete. If you don’t arrive for your scheduled appointment time within ten minutes, the delay will be treated as a no-show, and your child’s visit will have to be rescheduled. You will also have to pay the fee for a missed appointment. We ask that you arrive ten minutes prior to your appointment time to ensure that registration can be completed before your scheduled clinical time with the provider and nurse.
Cancelling Well-Care or Medication Appointments
Our office requires a 24-hour notice for the cancellation of these appointments. Failure to cancel prior to 24 hours before the visit will result in a $50 cancellation fee.
Cancelling Other Appointments
We require a minimum one-hour notice to cancel or reschedule ALL other appointments. This includes sick visits, nurse appointments, vaccine administration appointments, weight checks, and other appointments.
Failure to cancel a sick visit at least one hour prior to your visit time will result in a $25 late cancellation fee.
The late cancellation fee for nurse visits, weight checks, and vaccine administration visits is $10.
The above noted fees will NOT be billed to your insurance — they are your personal responsibility. Our office confirms appointments the day before your scheduled visit or on Friday for Monday appointments. This is provided as a courtesy; it is your responsibility to remember your appointment.
If an appointment is missed three times, you will be asked to transfer care to another practice.
Please call 970.484.4871 to cancel or reschedule an appointment.
When bringing a child in for a recheck, hospital follow-up, vision screening, hearing screening, or weight check, there will be an assessed charge and copay. This is because all visits, including nurse visits, must be recorded in the chart.
Many insurance companies require a referral from your primary care physician before a specialist may see you. Once you have been referred to a specialist by our office, call your insurance company. You can also check your insurance provider’s website to see if the specialist is in-network and if a referral is needed. Once you have been referred, call that specialist, set up an appointment time, and then call us promptly with that date and the specialist’s name. It is important to do these steps in sequence to assure maximal insurance coverage.