Kindly book your routine appointments ahead of time. It is helpful to inform the receptionist when calling to book an urgent appointment due to acute illness. They will make every effort to fit you in for the next available appointment. Occasionally, this may involve you seeing another physician in the clinic. Patients are generally not seen on a walk-in basis, although same-day appointments may be made available for patients requiring urgent medical attention. This policy ensures that patients with booked appointments are prioritized.
Your time is valuable, and our goal is to stay on schedule. Patients are encouraged to express one major medical concern or two minor concerns per visit to allow your concerns to be properly addressed and for our physicians to stay on time. Whenever possible, please tell the receptionist the reason for your visit, so they can book your appointment length appropriately. Unfortunately, there are times when unexpected events or medical emergencies occur, and you may be left waiting. Thank you in advance for your understanding and patience.
We strongly encourage our patients to see a physician within our clinic, if possible, even if your regular physician is unavailable. We share our medical record system, so your file can be reviewed by whichever physician you see, allowing for continuity of care. If there are any medications prescribed, or investigations ordered, your usual physician will be able to access these records and results, to ensure timely follow-up, and to avoid repeated or unnecessary tests. If you attend a walk-in-clinic, your regular physician may not receive any information about the visit, or any subsequent test reports.
You must be referred by an emergency room physician, hospital physician or your family physician to see one of our surgeons. You should receive your appointment information from your referring physician. If you are unsure of the reason for the visit, please discuss with your primary care physician prior to your specialist appointment.
Please be aware that the BC Provincial Medical Services Plan does not cover all medical services. Centro Medical follows the British Columbia Medical Association guidelines in charging for uninsured services. If you are unable to pay the full fee due to financial hardship, kindly inform myself or the receptionist regarding alternative arrangements.
Some examples of uninsured services include:
- Work or school sick notes, insurance forms and letters
- Driver’s Medical Examinations
- Physical fitness examinations for school, employment, summer camp, etc.
- Removal of benign skin lesions for non-medically necessary or cosmetic reasons.
If there are test results to be reviewed, the receptionist will call you specifically to book a follow-up appointment. Our front staff are unable to provide results over the telephone. Please do not automatically assume that “no news is good news”, because unfortunately, there are rare instances when our office may not have received your results. It is recommended that you schedule a follow-up appointment to review all test results, especially if you have ongoing medical concerns.
Referrals to specialists and other allied health professionals will be done only during a scheduled appointment visit. This also applies for re-referrals to specialists you have seen in the past. Please notify your physician if your specialist has advised you to obtain a new referral, even if you already have a follow-up appointment booked.
Our physicians will make every effort to provide you with primary medical care to the best of their ability. Unfortunately, there may be rare situations when patients may be dismissed from this medical practice. If patients are dismissed from this clinic, they will be allowed a short grace period for urgent treatment in our office while they look for another family physician.
Potential reasons for dismissal include:
- Frequent no-shows without valid reason;
- Persistent noncompliance with clinic policy;
- Abusive or rude behaviour to any members of our staff or physicians;
- Situations arising between physician and patient (or family members) which may affect the fiduciary nature of the patient-doctor relationship.
If you have forms to be completed by your physician (i.e. Driver’s Medical Examination form, Attending Physician Statement, Employment Insurance form, etc.) please inform the receptionist at the time of appointment booking. There may be a fee associated with the completion of the form. Please be aware that your physician may not be able to complete the form at the time of the visit. You may be asked to return to the clinic to pick up the completed form at a later date. For time-sensitive forms, it is your responsibility to ensure ample time for your physician to complete the form.
If you are involved in a motor vehicle accident which may involve an ICBC claim, please notify the front staff at the time of your appointment booking. Please provide your ICBC claim number available at the time of your office visit (if available).
Centro Medical is a teaching clinic. There may be times when there is a medical student or medical resident working in the office under the supervision of your physician. The receptionist will inform you when you arrive for your visit if there is a medical trainee on that day. Clinical encounters provide valuable learning experiences for all medical trainees. As a patient, I encourage you to provide feedback to myself to help our trainees become conscientious and competent physicians.
All prescription refills require a scheduled visit. Our physicians do not prescribe or refill prescriptions by fax or phone. This is the best way to properly monitor any adverse effects of your medications and note any changes in your health status that require special attention.
If you would like to speak with a physician, please make an in-person appointment to discuss your medical concerns. Occasionally, there may be times when my receptionist or your physician will contact patients directly by phone to relay an important or urgent message. As a result, we ask that you inform us if there are any changes to your phone number or contact information. Please be aware that our medical office assistants are not able to provide any results over the phone.
If you have any work-related injury or illness, please notify the front staff at the time of your appointment booking. Please ensure that you bring your WorksafeBC claim number (if available), as well as your employer contact information to ensure timely processing of your WorksafeBC claim.