Williamson Gynecology recognizes and supports our patients' right to participate in and make choices regarding their care. Our role in their care is to inform and advise them about their care. Because we offer Gynecology care, we affirm the importance of our patients maintaining an active medical relationship with a primary care provider (PCP). For patients who do not accept our medical advice, we follow these steps:
1. For patients who refuse recommended medical services at the time of their office visit, they may choose to sign an Informed Refusal form. Depending upon the patient's medical history and whether they have a PCP, the provider may decide to terminate the provider-patient relationship or to continue the relationship and will advise the patient of this decision at the time of their visit. If the decision to terminate the provider-patient relationship is discussed with the patient, then the patient will receive a certified notification letter within 14 days as described in step 5 below.
2. For patients who don't express their refusal to us but fail to schedule recommended medical services, we will make 3 efforts to contact the patient to advise the importance of scheduling screening tests and/or recommended specialist consultations. Our efforts to contact the patient will consist of 2 efforts to call the patient within 14-30 days of their failure to schedule the recommended medical services. If the patient does not schedule within 7 days of the 2nd contact, we will send a letter of advice to contact our office and schedule within the next 14 days. This letter of advice will include the consequences of failure to schedule the recommended services and a copy will be sent to the patient's PCP. The goal of this communication period is to insure the patient understands the medical consequences of their failure to follow our medical advice.
3. For patients who do not have a history of serious illness, such as cancer or diabetes, the letter will also include an Informed Refusal form that the patient may sign and return. For patients signing and returning the Informed Refusal form, the provider may decide to continue offering care to the patient if the patient continues their relationship with a PCP.
4. For patients who do have a history of serious illness, such as cancer or diabetes, the patient letter will advise that failure to schedule recommended medical services will result in termination from the provider's care. The notification letter will offer the patient 30 days of continued care for emergent purposes, list the local hospital and the patient insurer as potential resources for selecting a new provider and include a release of records authorization.
5. In the event the provider makes the decision to terminate the care relationship with the patient, a certified letter will be sent to the patient advising them their care has been terminated and offering emergent-only care for the next 30 days. A records release form for where to forward their records will be included and the suggestion to contact their local hospital or health insurer for names of providers to whom to transfer their care.
6. All communication will be documented in the patient's medical record (letters, patient's verbal response to phone calls, forms, orders for recommended services, etc.).