Frequently Asked Questions

I want to come as a new patient. How do I get my medical records transferred to your office?

In order to have your medical records transferred to our office from your current healthcare provider, you will need to complete a written authorization. You can either obtain that from your current primary care office, or call our medical records office at 716.326.4678 ext 222 and we can arrange to get the form to you. Our authorization form is available right here on our website.

What health plans do you accept?

We generally accept the following insurance products: Independent Health (including Encompass 65), most Univera, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Medicare, most Fidelis Care, most United Healthcare, GHI, NOVA, Health America, Tricare, Magna Care, Cigna, Beech Street, and PHCS.

 

Before you decide to come here as a new patient, we recommend that you call the office to be sure we participate with your particular health plan, as there are some insurance companies for which we participate with some of their products but not other ones.

I keep hearing about a patient portal. What is this portal and how is it useful?

We are glad to offer our patients access to some of their health information through a patient portal. On the portal, patients can request an appointment, review their health history, see lab and/or test results, and ask their provider questions.  Providers have the ability to send visit summaries and other documents through the portal. Many patients find this is a very valuable way to communicate with their healthcare provider.

Are you open on weekends?

We have office hours on Saturday mornings at our Westfield location, mostly for urgent same day needs.

The office is closed but I have an urgent problem. Should I go to the Emergency Department?

We strive to deliver healthcare in the proper setting. We ask that you do not go to the emergency department unless you are having a life threatening issue (urgent chest pain or breathing issues, severe allergic reaction, severe bleeding) or you are directed there by your healthcare provider or our office staff. In a true emergency please call 911. Otherwise always call our office first, including nights, weekends and holidays. An answering serviced staffed by a Registered Nurse will be able to take your call when the office is closed.

I ran out of my medications and don’t have an appointment scheduled for 2 weeks. What should I do?

We try to supply adequate medication refills at the time of your visit, but if you need a refill on a medication between appointments please notify your pharmacy. We are a part of the Surescripts electronic prescribing network, and your requests are sent to us electronically from the pharmacy. Controlled medications may take up to 3 days for processing, and cannot be refilled on weekends. Please plan ahead.

I just had testing done. When will I will hear about the results?

Usually diagnostic test results are back within 48 hours, but it is not always the case, as some tests do take longer. Once results are received and reviewed by your healthcare provider, you will be send a result letter to your patient portal and you will receive a notice by email to log in to see your results. The portal always gets results to you quicker. If you are not a portal user, results are sent by mail. If you have not received a result within 2 weeks, please call our office.

I forgot to ask the healthcare provider something when I was in for my appointment. Do I need to schedule another appointment?

If you need to ask the healthcare provider a simple question, or clarify something that provider told you, we can often answer those questions through the patient portal or over the phone. If calling, let the receptionist know that you have a non-urgent question for your provider. She will have the nurse call you back. If needed, the nurse will relay your question to the provider.

What happens if need to cancel an appointment at the last minute?

We request that all patients give us at least 24 hours advance notice if they need to cancel an appointment. We do understand that at times you may need to cancel at the last minute but would appreciate that being kept to a minimum. When you cancel appointments at the last minute, or "no show" for appointments, there is an empty spot in the provider's schedule that we don’t have the opportunity to fill. If you do need to cancel please let us know as soon as possible and have dates available so that we can reschedule at the time of cancellation. At times we find it necessary to discharge patients that continually cancel appointments with short notice.

What is the usual wait time for scheduling an appointment with my healthcare provider?

In most cases for an urgent need we can get you in for an appointment the same day. We cannot guarantee that a same day visit will be scheduled with the provider you usually see, but we will try to schedule you with a provider who is a member of their care team. For routine and preventive care, expect that we can sometimes schedule within 3 weeks of your call, depending on your provider’s and your availability.

My child came home from school and needs a physical to participate in sports.  They just had a well child check or physical in the office 9 months ago.  Do I need to bring them in to the office to have this paperwork filled out?

Usually no. If your child has had a well child check or physical within one year we are able to fill out the form for you, or print the notes from the last physical completed in the office. You are welcome to drop the form off at our office and we will take care of it for you. It may take up to a week before the form is ready. You also may give us consent to have the forms faxed to the school.

I am an established patient of Westfield Family Physicians and I am in need of a handicap parking permit. How do I go about getting that process started?

New York State requires that specific guidelines are followed in determining if a patient is eligible for a handicap parking permit. We are aware of the requirements and follow them strictly. You may obtain the required form from your town office. Complete your portion and bring it to our office. We will determine if the healthcare provider is able to fill it out without an appointment.

How do I know if a co-pay or deductible portion is due at the time of service?

Each health plan has their own set of rules. Prior to a visit, we verify insurance information and are often able to determine the copay you owe. However, it is not always known at the time of service. If you are unsure, we recommend you call your member services number to verify. That number can usually be found on the back of your insurance card. It is always good to understand your own health plan rules and be an informed consumer.

I received my billing statement for services and my explanation of benefits from the insurance company. I don't understand what I actually owe. Is there someone I can talk to about what I actually owe?

We understand that healthcare billing can be confusing. By the time you receive your billing statement from the office, we have already billed your health plan and they notified us what portion you owe after insurance payment. If ever in doubt please feel free to call and our billing staff can explain. The billing staff can be reached at 716.326.4678 ext 254.

I hear in the news about breaches of confidential information. How can you assure me my information is secure?

We use an Electronic Health Record (EHR) that has passed rigorous security standards set by the federal government. Information is secured by HIPAA compliant encryption standards so that your information is safeguarded. Our staff undergo training on information security when they are hired, and also are required to attend various information security training updates at times throughout the year. When you become a new patient, you are given a Notice of Privacy Practices that details the ways your health information is used. If you have further questions about information security, you are welcome to call our Information Security Officer at 716.326.4678 ext 235.

Westfield Family Physicians

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westfield office

138 East Main Street

P.O. Box 10, Westfield, NY 14787

Phone: (716) 326-4678

Fax: (716) 326-4641

sherman office

115 East Main Street

P.O. Box 570, Sherman, NY 14781

Phone: (716) 761-6144

Fax: (716) 761-6156

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