Office Policies | MedStar Health

MedStar Health Office Policies

Phone calls

Every phone call is important to us, and we will attempt to answer your calls and return your phone messages as promptly as possible. We appreciate your patience should you have to wait on hold or leave a voice mail message. Our phone lines are busiest in the early morning hours, especially on Monday mornings. If you do not need to contact the office immediately, we recommend calling the office later during the day. Phone messages will be returned on the same business day as soon as the physician is available. Please leave a phone number where you know we will be able to reach you. If you call for an urgent matter, we will make every effort to respond immediately. All messages are reviewed by the physician; however, your call may be returned by a medical assistant or staff member.

Please be aware that our providers will not leave their scheduled patients to return routine phone calls; these are generally answered after patient care sessions are finished.


  • When scheduling an appointment, please advise the receptionist of the exact reason for the visit and if you have seen the doctor previously.

  • If you are seeing the doctor for a pre-operation physical exam, please have your paperwork (indicating tests needed) with you from the requesting physician.

  • Routine physical exams are booked four to six weeks in advance.

  • If you need to cancel your appointment, please call to advise us at least 24 hours in advance.

  • Please arrive 10 to 15 minutes before your scheduled appointment so that we can review, update or complete your demographic information. Please notify us immediately of any changes in your name, address, phone number, or insurance.

  • Bring your current insurance card with you for each appointment. If your insurance coverage is through a family member, please have that person’s information as well. If we do not have your current information, you will be responsible for payment. New patients will also be asked for a photo ID (driver’s license).

  • Familiarize yourself with your insurance guidelines regarding co-pays, deductibles, payment of annual physicals, referrals to specialists, and ER visits.

  • Co-pays, insurance cards, and referrals are expected at time of service.

  • Please bring your medicine bottle(s) or a complete list of your medications with you to each appointment.

  • Please be on time for your appointments. If you arrive more than 15 minutes late for your scheduled appointment, you may be asked to reschedule your appointment or given the option to wait until scheduled patients have been seen.

  • If calling for an urgent or same-day appointment, you may not be able to see your regular provider. We will let you know the name of the provider you will be seeing when you make your appointment.

Before and after hours

If you are experiencing a life-threatening medical emergency, call 911.

If you need urgent, but not emergency, assistance during non-business hours, please call the office. A doctor is on call 24 hours a day after hours only for urgent matters. Our answering service is available before and after business hours. The physician on call will be contacted for urgent matters.


When your provider suggests a specialist evaluation or diagnostic testing that requires a referral, set up your appointment and call our referral line (option 1) to leave a message.

When leaving a message for a referral, please include the following information: Your name, phone number, your doctor's name, the name of the doctor or test requested, the date of the appointment or test for which you need the referral, your insurance information, and if you prefer to have it mailed to you or if you will pick it up. Please allow five-seven business days to process the referral.

Some referrals require insurance pre-authorization and cannot be processed immediately. Insurance guidelines prohibit us from backdating referrals. We require three business days for the processing of routine referrals.

Emergency office closing

There are times when weather conditions and other circumstances may not allow our staff to get to the office, or will demand early closing. When questionable circumstances exist, please call the office before starting out for a scheduled appointment. 

Prescription refills

  • When calling for a routine prescription refill, please allow 24 hours for your prescription to be called into the pharmacy. Routine prescriptions are those that have been prescribed to you and are taken every day.

  • For quick and accurate turnaround, have your pharmacy fax your request to us.

  • If you need a medicine urgently, we will make every effort to respond to you that same business day.

  • If you are interested in a new medication, please schedule an appointment to speak with your doctor. We do not routinely call in medicines that have not been previously prescribed.

  • When leaving a message for a medication refill, please leave the following information: your name, phone number, the full name of the medication, the dose (usually in milligrams), the frequency with which you take it, your doctor's name, and the name and phone number of your pharmacy.

  • Please remind your doctor of any medication allergies.


If your doctor requests laboratory tests, you will be referred to a lab which participates with your health insurance plan. Since we do not draw routine blood work, our staff will help you locate a participating lab site that is convenient for you. We will draw blood for laboratory studies your doctor believes are urgent.

Electronic medical records

Electronic Medical Records (EMR) are the wave of the future and MMG is out in front in automating its clinical record keeping. EMR is a software storehouse of a patient's medical history — tests, diagnoses chronic conditions, prescriptions, physician comments, etc. — accessible anytime and never buried in an avalanche of paperwork.