First Visit Information
The time leading up to the first visit to any doctor, especially a fertility specialist, can be a time of anxiety. Knowing what to expect can help ease some of that tension.
What should I do prior to my appointment?
As you make your appointment, our schedulers will ask that you complete a medical history form, which can be obtained from our office or mailed to you.
We ask that you complete all registration forms and fax back to us (423-643-0699) or mail to us at least one week prior to your visit. This will allow us to be fully prepared for your visit. Second, please organize all appropriate medical records. If possible, have your provider fax them directly to us at (423) 643-0699.
When should I arrive for my first visit?
With the COVID-19 pandemic, our concern for the safety of our patients and staff is paramount. We have implemented safety precautions including spacing out appointments and asking patients to wait in their vehicles instead of the reception area. In light of this, and to alleviate wait times in vehicles, we no longer require patients to arrive early for appointments.
Should my partner come to the first visit?
While we normally encourage partners to attend appointments, due to COVID-19 and our concern for the safety of our patients and staff, we have to limit the number of people who enter our office. For the time being only patients can attend in-person appointments.
What happens at the first visit?
After completing your paperwork, we will check your blood pressure and obtain your height and weight.
You will then meet with the physician who will review your medical history and tell you what tests, if any, should be considered. He or she will also advise you on your diagnosis and tell you what treatment options to think about.
Not everyone will leave with a treatment plan. Sometimes additional testing is required prior to knowing how best to proceed, or the individual or couple needs to time to consider all the options.
Will I have to have a physical exam?
Most times a physical examination is not required at the first visit. Unless there is a medical reason to perform an exam, this may be deferred.
Will I have blood work performed?
This depends on what tests have been ordered by your referring and/or primary provider. It also depends on your medical history and your current menstrual cycle day. Not all tests can be performed on the same day of the cycle.
How much will the visit cost?
This depends on your insurance company. For example, while many patients have coverage for diagnostic testing and evaluation there are often higher co-pays or costs associated with high-deductible health plans. We encourage patients to check with their insurance company regarding benefits prior to your visit. If you have benefits for the condition that we are evaluating, you might be accountable for the co-pay only.
If you don’t have insurance coverage, the cost of the initial consultation is $300 (any laboratory or ultrasound testing is billed separately). We are sensitive to patient finances, and the physician will help you prioritize testing.
What is covered by insurance?
Health benefits varies by insurance company and employer plan. For example, fertility treatment is not often covered but some patients do have coverage for diagnostic testing and evaluation (although co-pays or costs are often higher with high-deductible health plans). We encourage patients to check with their insurance company regarding benefits prior to your visit, and to speak with one of our financial counselors.
What happens if I need to reschedule?
In order to ensure we are able to see everyone who has requested an appointment, we charge a small fee for missed appointments. To avoid this fee call us 423-509-8094 as soon as you know that you won’t be able to keep your appointment.
If it is less than 24 hours before your scheduled visit, you may be charged a $100 fee. If you are charged, but reschedule and keep that appointment, you will be refunded the $100 fee. Patients who miss more than one appointment without giving us 24 hours notice will not be given a refund.
How long will my visit last?
This can depend on an individual’s needs. Allow time for completing registration (15 minutes) and a physician consultation (30 to 45 minutes). If an ultrasound and/or bloodwork is performed, this may require more time (15-20 minutes). Patients may also want to meet with the financial counselor to learn about costs and payment options (15 minutes).
In sum, 60-90 minutes is the average time for the first consult.