Frequently Asked Questions
Our Services (Acupuncture)
Our Services (All Other)
Billing, Insurance, and Records
Which health insurance plans does East West Medical Group accept?
Do you take walk-ins?
Yes, our clinic does take walk-ins but service is not guaranteed. This is especially true for our acupuncture and internal medicine services which are usually fully booked by the day of. We recommend making an appointment prior to visiting to ensure service is provided.
Where are you located, and what are your hours?
Please click here.
Does acupuncture hurt?
In short, no. Acupuncture is a painless procedure when done correctly by an experienced acupuncturist. However, a small number of patients who are particularly sensitive may feel slight discomfort (such as a pinch) when a needle is inserted. There are also a couple of acupuncture points, such as the ones on the palm of the hand, that are more likely to cause slight discomfort due to the increased number of nerve endings located there. In any case though, there should never be any lasting discomfort or pain and the acupuncturist should be notified right away if this occurs.
Will acupuncture cause me to bleed?
Although it's possible, patients should not expect to bleed where needles are inserted. Occasionally, a drop of blood may result due to a tiny unseen vessel just under the skin surface. Any bleeding is stopped quickly with light pressure and a cotton ball.
Do I need a referral for acupuncture?
A referral is only necessary for patients planning to pay with health insurance. Otherwise, no referral is necessary for acupuncture services.
How soon will I start to see changes?
This depends on the kind of health issue being addressing and is best answered by the acupuncturist treating you. Typically however, short-term (acute) problems will respond within a few treatments, while long-term (chronic) problems may take up to twelve or more treatments before you're likely to see noticeable improvement.
Can I receive acupuncture if I'm currently on an anticoagulant (blood thinning) medication?
Yes. Acupuncture is safe for patients taking anticoagulant medications such as warfarin (coumadin) or heparin. Acupuncture can also be performed on patients with bleeding disorders such as haemophilia, but should consult with the acupuncturist about their condition prior to treatment. In all cases, it's recommended that the patient disclose their medical and prescription history with the acupuncturist in order to maximize treatment safety and effectiveness.
Can I receive acupuncture if I'm pregnant?
Yes. Acupuncture is safe for both expectant mother and child.
What's the difference between Internal Medicine and Family Medicine?
Internal medicine education focuses mainly on adults and includes experience in both general medicine and the internal medicine subspecialties. The general and subspecialty nature of training allows internists (doctors who specialize in internal medicine) to develop expertise in diagnosing a wide variety of diseases that commonly affect adults and in managing complex medical situations where multiple conditions may affect a single individual. Their training also enables them to effectively interact with other internal medicine specialists in co-managing complex patients (such as those with transplants, cancer, or autoimmune disease) and easily managing the transitions from outpatient (clinic) to inpatient (hospital) settings for their patients who require hospitalization.
Family medicine education is broader in nature than internal medicine since it involves training in the care of children and procedures and services often provided by other specialties. Because of their broad skill set, family physicians typically adapt the nature of their practices to meet the specific medical needs of their community. Although the depth of training in adult medical issues may be less than in internal medicine, the emphasis on outpatient medicine, continuity of care, health maintenance, and disease prevention allows family physicians to function as primary care providers for adults as part of a family unit depending on individual medical need.
Both have unique skill sets and important roles in primary care depending on the practice setting and the specific needs of the patient.
Which health insurance plans does East West Medical Group accept?
All insurance will be verified either before or on your first visit to our office. A verification of benefits does not guarantee payment. All benefits are subject to the patient's plan. If the insurance company denies the claim, the patient will be responsible for the cash price on the date of service. If insurance has not been verified on or before the first date of service, the patient will be charged for the cash price for the visit and will have the option for a refund or credit to their account.
Our office is in-network with these PPO, PPO Plus, or EPO plans:
United Health Care
For HMOs, all third party insurance companies will require an authorization for treatment. We accept:
American Specialty Health (ASHP)
A.C.N. / Optum Health
St. Jude Heritage
We are out-of-network with:
Cigna (unless there is a carve-out through ASHP)
We also accept:
Workman's Compensation Cases
Personal Injury Cases
AARP Medicare Complete Secure Horizons Plan 2 (HMO)
Noridian (chiropractic only)
Dr. Lawrence Siordia (chiropractic) accepts: ASHP, Blue Cross, and Noridian (Medicare).
Dr. Rod Klopfer (chiropractic) accepts: ASHP, Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Aetna, and Kaiser.
Please contact us for the most up-to-date listing of insurances our health providers accept.
Can you help me understand some of the healthcare and managed care terms?
A number of patients may not be familiar with the terms and phrases used in healthcare, so we've provided a quick reference guide below:
An authorization is a permission given by a patient's HMO plan (or third-party insurance company) to use their acupuncture benefits for a certain number of visits.
The amount of money the insured person pays each time he or she sees a doctor, gets a prescription, or has a medical service rendered. Typical in HMO plans.
The percentage of the total fee the insured person pays each time he or she sees a doctor, gets a prescription, or has a medical service rendered. Typical fee-for-service plans such as PPOs.
Fee For Service
Paying for medical services when they are provided or when a bill is received. Payment can be in cash or as an insurance reimbursement.
A benefit plan in which you must chose a primary care physician and you must use the physicians who are signed up with that group and HMO for any care or the HMO will not pay for the care.
A government-funded insurance program that covers people over age 65 and some people with certain diseases or disabilities.
Out of Pocket
Any fee paid by the patient; can be a co-payment, deductible or the entire bill.
Point of Service (POS) Plan
Members have an HMO and a PPO option. When you need care, you choose to activate either the HMO or PPO option.
Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) Plan
The insurance company will give you a list of physicians you can go to and still be covered; if you go to a physician outside of that list, the insurance company might pay for some of the care, but will usually require you to pay a larger amount.
Primary Care Physician
A doctor who coordinates the care for a person with managed care insurance. All managed care insurance plans require members to choose a primary care physician or medical group before seeking care.
What the primary care physician writes if you need specialized medical care with another medical provider.
How can I obtain my medical records?
Please call or visit our office to obtain a medical records release form. We can provide you a copy of your medical records only after this form is filled out.
What is HIPAA?
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) is a Federal Law enacted to:
Protect the privacy of a patient's personal and health information.
Provide for the physical and electronic security of personal health information.
Simplify billing and other transactions with Standardized Code Sets and Transactions.
Specify new rights of patients to approve access / use of their medical information.