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What types of pain does Vermont Pain Management treat?

            VPM specializes in diagnosing (finding the precise cause of) and treating chronic pain. We also treat cancer pain and, sometimes, acute pain.

 

What types of treatment does Vermont Pain Management provide?

Vermont Pain Management is committed to providing the highest quality and caring in its service. We do this utilizing a wide array of modern tools: precision nerve injections, radiofrequency, physical therapy, medicines and psychological support. The clinic is state of the art and is operated by a highly trained, certified and compassionate staff.

 

How long will I have to wait for my initial evaluation?

            Patients are generally scheduled within two weeks for a new evaluation.

 

What is the procedure for the initial evaluation?

            Patients enjoy a relaxed, personalized experience in a beautiful, convenient location. We are located on the corner of Dorset Street and Kennedy drive in South Burlington.  Patients receive a welcome packet in the mail, prior to their visit to fill in at their leisure thereby reducing waiting time at the office.  A member of the VPM staff will perform your initial evaluation. Our staff includes nurses and a pain management specialist. After your initial examination, your doctor will discuss with you the most effective program for your problem.  Patients are seen and treated on an outpatient basis.  We will keep your family doctor and referring physician informed of the nature of your treatment and of your progress.

 

How do you handle prescription refills?

VPM is not a prescription center. We do not take patients into our system to only write them prescriptions. We approach pain by seeking to find the underlying cause of the pain problem and then through a procedural approach working to treat that cause. Often, this does not involve a prescription so to speak. If we do put you on a specific medication, we will follow your care and treat you according to the specific treatment plan we have devised for you.

 

What if I have questions about my treatment?

            Vermont Pain Management recognizes that medical procedures can at times be unsettling. Every effort is made to simply and completely answer all questions related to procedures. VPM believes that patient education is paramount to the healing process. We offer informational brochures and booklets on the most common problems treated and procedures performed.

 

How many people are affected by chronic pain and how is quality of life affected by chronic pain?

            One in three Americans suffers from some form of chronic pain. Chronic pain is persistent pain that doesn't go away despite medical efforts at treatment. It disrupts home life and work, and others who canít see the cause of pain often misunderstand it. When chronic pain takes over, one's entire life may become focused on it. The pain dictates how much one can do and when it can be done. It keeps a person from living life to the fullest.  If chronic pain is allowed to control a person, that person can get caught in a downward spiral that affects health and relationships. The less active that person becomes, the weaker they get. As the pain drags on, enjoyable activities are avoided for fear of making the pain worse. People find it difficult to sleep comfortably which leaves them exhausted and less able to bear pain. There are feelings of anger, anxiety, and depression. People withdraw from family and friends. There is a sense of loss of control of one's life. But with effective treatments, a person can, with time and help get back control of their life.

 

What are the billing procedures and payment options for my treatment?

            Vermont Pain Management participates with Medicare, Blue Cross-Blue Shield, MVP, CIGNA, CBA and most other plans. We also accept most insurance plans as an out-of-network provider. Billing procedures are simplified by sending bills only after an insurance statement and payment are received. This ensures correct billing the first time. Our billing specialist is fully trained to answer any questions about your bills or to help with your questions about insurance forms. Our office accepts cash, personal checks as well as VISA and MasterCard.

 

Will my health insurance pay for Pain Management?

            Benefits vary per employer. Our staff will do a complete benefit check and review your benefits with you, if you wish. All your financial questions will be answered to the best of our ability with the information available.

 

If insurance is involved, what is my financial responsibility?

            Patient responsibility depends on what benefits your employer purchased in your insurance plan. Each employer is different in what they choose to provide as covered benefits. We will verify your benefits before your appointment and we can help you understand your insurance coverage and your financial responsibility during your financial consultation.

 

If I have no health insurance coverage, what is the cost of my treatment?

            The costs can vary depending on what type of treatment is needed by the patient. VPM offers numerous cash global discount packages to choose from. We will be happy to arrange a conference with our billing specialist to review the costs in detail with you.

 

Do I have to get my insurance pre-authorization or do you do it?

            If your insurance requires a pre-authorization to see a specialist, then you must get a referral from a Primary Care Physician or OB/GYN to see a pain specialist for an initial appointment. After the initial consultation, our office will obtain any future pre-authorizations, sometimes with the assistance of your referring doctor.

 

If my insurance plan requires a pre-authorization, can I be seen or start treatment without the authorization? Can I get a retroactive authorization?

            Unfortunately, most plans that require an authorization will not issue authorization after treatment. Such authorizations usually apply only to emergency cases involving potential for loss of limb, eyesight, or life.