The return of the house call: urgent care to the patient’s home

Home Detached House Real Estate DrawingEmergency physicians and nurse practitioners from Upstate University Hospital now offer a new service that is centuries old: house calls.

665282_illustrationUpstate at Home began in September, providing urgent medical care to people who become injured or ill but don’t require a trip to the hospital and don’t want to leave their home. It’s available from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. in areas to the east of Syracuse. Christian Knutsen, MD, said the service could expand to other areas in the future.

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Christian Knutsen, MD

The service is perfect for people who cannot get an appointment with their regular doctor and for visitors. A house call can eliminate taking the whole family to a clinic or hospital emergency room when one member is sick, driving in bad weather, sitting with other sick people in a waiting room, or having to leave a comfortable home when one is not feeling well. A nurse answers calls at 315-464-4646 and asks a series of questions to make sure a house call is appropriate.

Upstate at Home participates with most major health insurance companies, Medicare and Medicaid. People with insurance will be asked to pay their co-payment over the phone. People whose insurance coverage cannot be verified are asked to make a down payment of $175, and they are billed for the remainder of charges after the visit.

Layout 1hloa-art2Hear a radio interview about house calls with Knutsen. This article appears in the fall 2015 issue of Upstate Health magazine.

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