Ambulatory care is medical care provided on an outpatient basis, typically at a hospital or clinic. Patients can be seen by a variety of specialists in different departments and receive diagnostic testing, treatments, and therapies without being admitted to the hospital.
There are many benefits to receiving ambulatory care, including shorter wait times, lower costs, and the ability to return home the same day. However, it is important to be prepared for your appointment and know what to expect.
Here are some things you should know before going to an ambulatory care center:
1. Make sure you have a referral from your primary care doctor.
In most cases, you will need a referral from your primary care doctor in order to see a specialist at an ambulatory care center.
2. Bring your insurance card and identification.
You will need to provide your insurance information when you check in for your appointment. This will help the nurse or staff assigned in the ambulatory coding and billing to process your claim accurately.
3. Be prepared for tests and procedures.
Depending on the reason for your visit, you may need to undergo tests or procedures while at the ambulatory care center. For example, if you are seeing a cardiologist for an irregular heartbeat, you may need to have an electrocardiogram (ECG or EKG).
4. Ask questions.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions about your condition, the care you’re receiving, cost, or anything else that’s on your mind. We want to make sure you understand your treatment and what to expect. Many tests and procedures are covered by insurance, but you may be responsible for some out-of-pocket costs. Ask about the cost of any tests or procedures before you agree to them.
5. Be prepared to answer questions about your medical history.
The staff at the ambulatory care center will need to know about your medical history in order to provide the best care possible. Your medical history includes information about your current and past health conditions, medications, allergies, and immunizations.
6. Follow instructions.
Be sure to follow any instructions you’re given before and after tests or procedures. For example, you may need to fast (not eat or drink) for a certain period of time before having a blood test. This is to ensure that the results are accurate.
7. Keep your follow-up appointments.
After you’re seen at the ambulatory care center, you may need to follow up with your primary care doctor or the specialist you saw. Be sure to schedule any needed appointments and keep them.
8. Know when to call for help.
If you have any questions or concerns after you leave the ambulatory care center, don’t hesitate to call your primary care doctor or the specialist you saw. You should also call if you have any new or worsening symptoms.
Receiving care at an ambulatory care center can be a convenient and cost-effective way to receive the medical care you need. However, it is important to be prepared for your appointment and understand what to expect. By following these tips, you can ensure that your experience is a positive one.