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Saturday, April 23, 2016

South Lake Animal League Pet Supply and Food Drive

     
South Lake Animal League:

 Pet Supply and Food Drive

       Hello, my name is Lily Henne and at home, I have two lovable little dogs and, in my opinion, an adorable bearded dragon. I couldn't even begin to imagine if my pets didn't have a home, food, or love. Sadly, there are some animals that need attention and care. Luckily, the South Lake Animal League rescues about 100 animals every month. Obviously, to take care of lots of animals you would need an abundance of supplies to keep them healthy. Therefore, I have organized a Pet Supply and Food Drive to help the animals in need. I am interested in helping this organization because I have always loved all animals and can't bear to see them sad, sickly, and homeless.

     

  The Pet Supply and Food Drive will be April 29th - May 20th. The drop off location for the supplies is the Center for Ankle and Foot Care. The address is 3190 Citrus Tower - Clermont Florida. The Center for Ankle and Foot Care will be open for drop offs from 8 AM - 4 PM on Monday through Thursday. On Fridays, it is open from 8 AM - 1 PM. I will try to get other drop off locations for the drive. If I get another location I will update my blog.


       


Some supplies that the dogs would appriciate are;

  •  Durable Chew Toys such as Nylabones and Kongs,
  •  Mesh Harnesses, Leashes, 
  • Pedigree Adult Dry Dog food, 
  • Pedigree Dry Puppy Food,
  •  Dog Treats,
  •  Flea and Tic Control for dogs and puppies, 
  • Sheets, Towels
  • Blankets that fit in a washer. 
On the other hand, supplies for cats are;
  •  Cat Treats
  •  Cat Toys of all variety
  •  Purina Kitten Chow
  •  Purina Cat Chow,
  • Flea and Tic Control for cats and kittens
  • Cat Litter
  • Soft Blankets
They are also in need for cleaning supplies like the following;

  •  Paper Towels
  • Toilet Paper
  •  Paper Plates, Paper Cups
  •  Liquid Laundry Detergent
  •  Bleach
  • Fabulosa
  •  Pine Sol or Generic Brand All-Purpose Cleaners
  •  Industrial Mop Heads large 1/4 " tape band, Liquid Dish Soap
  •  Brooms
  •  Rakes
  •  Shovels
  •  Hand Handled Scrub Brushes and Trash Bags; 14 gallon, 33+ gallon, 55 gallon.  
      To conclude, I think that everyone should support the South Lake Animal League, an amazing organization. One great way is to simply donate some pet supplies and food. For as little as 3 dollars you could make a cat or dog very happy. How would you feel if you were without care, food, and a home?


Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Open letter to Primary Care Doctors who tell elderly patients Medicare should cover the cutting their toenail(This is not true, most of the time)

Though I am trained in foot an ankle surgery, I must admit my favorite patients are my elderly patients that just come in to the office for routine foot care.  I see them every couple of months, we talk about their grandchildren, my kids and life in general.  We establish a fantastic long term relationship that is full of amazing conversation, while performing a task they are unable to perform themselves.

But when we see many of these patients as a first encounter they are convinced that this is a covered service by Medicare.  Some people believe this because they have seen a podiatrist for years before they moved to our area and the doctor has been billing this illegally or they have seen their primary care physician and they say, "Medicare covers cutting of the toenails." This simply is not true!

It is true that if you are diabetic, meet certain class findings, and have seen your primary care physician, who is actively treating your diabetes, in the last 6 months, then yes Medicare will cover such a service. But as far as someone who just happens to be elderly with long toenails, no dice! Below is an excerpt from the medicare.gov regarding podiatry services that are covered:

"Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) covers podiatrist services for medically necessary treatment of foot injuries or diseases (like hammer toes, bunion deformities, and heel spurs). Part B generally doesn't cover routine foot care (like the cutting or removal of corns and calluses, the trimming, cutting, and clipping of nails, or hygienic or other preventive maintenance, including cleaning and soaking the feet)."

This becomes a very big source of contention in our office on a daily basis, over exhausting our resources of our office staff having to explain to patients why this is not covered.  But many elderly people can not perform this service themselves due to: not being able to reach their feet, bad back, bad hip or even they are just too thick for them to cut.  All of these are great reasons for an elderly person to be seen by a podiatrist for this service but insurance will not cover it and the patient has to be prepared for this out of pocket expense. These patient's are given a Medicare Advance Beneficiary Notice that explains that it is not a covered service. 

Encouraging an older person to go to a nail salon can be irresponsible advice from a doctor and a big problem exposing the patient to many community acquired skin and nail infections.  There are only 2 states that require that nail salons autoclave their instruments: Iowa and Texas.  So sending an elderly person into this environment is really not a great idea.

In our office we perform the highest level of care for these patients.  They are seen by the podiatrist, not a tech or medical assistant. The podiatrist will evaluate and treat the patient professionally debriding(cutting) the the toenails and the calluses if necessary.  The patient will leave with peace of mind knowing that they are getting the best possible care and service for their feet.

What we charge for these services are below:
Trimming of toenails
$60

Trimming of calluses
$60

Trimming of toenails and calluses

$75

Sometimes these services can take up to 45 minutes when someone has very thick toenails and many calluses.  We do not rush through this exam and service because our ultimate goal is to give the patient the best possible outcome.  We see many patients for this type of non covered routine foot care and try to perform this in a way that we can space out the visits so they may only need to visit us 3 to 4 times a year.  

Most podiatry offices offer this type of service and prices range from $50-$75.  The expense may seem steep. but by having a nail care patient in the treatment room the podiatrist is possibly missing much higher revenue of a new patient or even reimbursement for a follow up for an established patient.  Like all other doctor offices we have multiple staff: medical assistants, billing company, insurance specialist, and receptionist. These people all have to be paid for their hard work.  So it really is impossible for us to perform this service for less. If the doctor is performing the service themselves this service is very well worth it for the patient and in the patient's best interest.

If you would like to learn more about our office see our website: http://centeranklefootcare.com/

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

No insurance should not be a reason to ignore your feet!

In the ever increasingly expensive world of health insurance, many people have opted out of the insurance exchange and for good reason, it is extremely expensive.  Some statistics show that in Florida, when the health insurance exchange officially opened, many insurance premiums went up by 40%! My own personal health insurance premium went up by $300 a month more for my family of five, we now pay over $1000 a month for health insurance we only use "in case of an emergency".
Insurance premiums have gone up and interestingly enough reimbursement to the doctors you see have gone down.  This is not meant to be a winy doctor crying poor.  It is meant to inform you that the insurance companies have the upper hand on all of us.

There are many people that have decided not to pay $1500 a month for health insurance.  When your feet hurt, you do not have to ignore them. We have put together our price list for the non insured to take the guess work out of the cost for seeing one of our foot doctors.  If you have foot pain and do not have insurance, you want to cut out the middle man.  Seeing a board certified foot surgeon instead of your primary care physician, urgent care or emergency room visit could literally save you hundreds and hundreds of dollars.

If you live in Florida near Orlando we are conveniently located in Clermont.  This is a very nice location in Central Florida.  We are only 23 miles from Disney World so even if you are on vacation and have a foot problem one of our Board certified foot and ankle surgeons would be more than happy to get  you back on your feet!

We treat ankle sprains, heel pain, ingrown nails, nail fungus, fractures of the foot and ankle, warts and many other foot related problems.  We have on sight digital x-ray, so we are able to answer many bone related problems right away.

Below is the link to our pricing for the Center for Ankle and Foot Care for non insured patients:
http://centeranklefootcare.com/cash-price-list.html