Facts and Questions
What do I need to bring for my first visit?
Please bring medical and insurance information with you, including a list of your current medications and allergies, insurance ID cards, and, if possible, your current pair of glasses and/or you contact lens boxes. If your insurance company requires Referrals to see a Specialist, please contact your PCP to have one sent over prior to your appointment, or bring it with you.
If you will be unable to provide any of these items, please mention it when you schedule your appointment.
Also, feel free to have your New Patient Paperwork filled out when you arrive, using the links below:
My Primary Care Physician is sending me to your practice for a medical condition with my eyes. Will my health insurance cover treatment?
Most insurances provide coverage if your primary doctor refers you to our practice for a medical problem. However, you should always contact your insurance company prior to your visit if you have questions about your coverage.
What is this going to cost me?
Our office typically collects payment at the end of your appointment—we understand the need to discuss with your doctor before making eyeglass or contact lens orders, or having additional testing performed. We do, however, make every effort to inform you upfront of possible unexpected costs.
If you are going through an insurance company, whether for a vision or medical visit, you can expect to pay the designated plan copay. Some medical insurance plans do not cover what is called the Refraction, which is how the doctor determines the actual eyeglass prescription. If we suspect that your insurance will not cover this portion, you will be asked to pay the cost on the day of your exam.
Additionally, some insurance plans that do cover your visit may subject the visit to your annual deductible. After we process your claim, anything that your insurance determines falls under the scope of the patient's responsibility will be billed. If you have questions on what is your responsibility, you can consult your insurance's Explanation of Benefits that will be mailed to you.
If you wear contacts or are interested in wearing contacts, there is an initial fitting and yearly evaluation fee, which most insurances do not cover.
When purchasing eyeglasses, our Opticians will discuss with you the different costs of materials so that you can make an informed decision for what is right for you. To process an order, half of the order total is required. We can hold the order until arrangements are made, if necessary.
If you are not using any insurance or we are an out-of-network provider for your insurance, we will be happy to discuss pricing options with you.
What forms of payment do you accept?
We gladly accept VISA, MasterCard, and Discover credit cards, personal checks, and cash. Flexible Benefits and Debit cards can be used only if they are run through the above credit processors.
Unfortunely, we can not process financed credit accounts, such as Care Credit, as this time.
I have a secondary insurance. Why am I receiving a bill?
If you have two forms of insurance, most of the time we are required to bill according to the perameters of your primary plan. This includes needing referrals, and accepting copays. We do not bill to a secondary insurance. This is the patient's responsibility and we will be happy to provide itemized receipts to facilitate the process for you. If you believe your secondary insurance will cover a benefit that your primary does not, we will be happy to bill the primary insurance to your preference, but you will still be responsible for the patient portion according to the primary plan. You will be reimbursed if your secondary picks up the balance.
I have Medicare coverage. Why do I have to pay out-of-pocket for the Refraction? What is a Refraction?
Medicare does not pay for routine vision exams. A routine vision exam is when a patient has no medical complaints with their eyes and just needs their vision checked.
Medicare will pay for medical and surgical eye care only. Medical and surgical eye care includes treatments for diseases like glaucoma, diabetes, cataracts, eye infections and other eye-related problems.
A Refraction is the test used to determine your best-corrected vision and is sometimes necessary even for evaluating medical eye problems. Unfortunately, Medicare will not cover this portion. Anything that Medicare does not cover will become the patient responsibility. Most Medicare Supplement Insurances will still not cover a service that Medicare does not cover. You can consult your Medicare Explanation of Benefits for clarity.
How long will a full eye exam take?
Typically, a comprehensive routine eye exam can take thirty minutes to an hour. Factors that can affect the duration are: how quickly your eyes take to dilate, if additional testing is required, if you are having contact lenses fit or evaluated. Also, block off time either before or after your exam if you plan to order new glasses.
Due to the length of time required for these appointments, it is our office policy not to see more than two family members in one business day. Especially with children, patients can grow restless waiting so long, and it can affect the doctor's readings of your eyes. While our doctors are always happy to recheck an Rx that you are concerned with, keeping your eyes fresh during your first visit and getting it right the first time is always best.
We apologize for any inconvenience this policy may cause.
Of course, if you are only coming in to purchanse new glasses, and do not need to see a doctor, we will be happy to fit the entire family!
Is it safe for me to drive home after an eye exam?
Absolutely. During the exam, we may have to dilate your pupils, which will make your eyes sensitive to light, and slightly distort your near vision. These effects are normal and usually subside within a few hours. You should plan to bring something to shield your eyes from the sun. If you feel you will be unable to drive after the appointment, please bring someone with you to drive you home.
What is the difference between a routine eye exam and a contact lens exam?
Routine eye exams are designed to detect vision problems and are an important preventive measure for maintaining your overall health and wellness. In fact, a thorough eye exam can detect a number of serious medical conditions, such as glaucoma, cataracts, diabetes, and even cancer.
Contact lens exams are designed to evaluate your vision with contacts. Although your vision may be clear and you feel no discomfort from your lenses, there are potential risk factors with improper wearing or fitting of contact lenses that can affect the overall health of your eyes.
What should I do if I have an eye emergency?
Please call our office. Although there may be a wait, one of our doctors will see you as soon as possible. We encourage you to call and arrive as soon as the emergency occurs, despite the perceived urgency. Some cases will need to be referred out to an Opthamologist, and it will be easier for you to get your problem resolved the earlier care takes place.