Even during a pandemic, there are still critical foot care services that require in-person treatment. While we encourage the use of telemedicine whenever we possibly can, sometimes you really do need a procedure or treatment that simply cannot be conducted remotely.
At the same time, you want to protect yourself and your family.
So, what can you do to get the care you need AND keep everyone safe?
Valet medical service appointments!
Put simply, this is a safer way of getting the care you need, while also minimizing exposure to others. On top of that, we’ve ramped up our already stringent standards of cleanliness, with extra cleaning, safety, and sanitization measures between all interactions.
Valet services are simply additional steps our team takes to minimize your time spent in our office and around others as much as possible. Here is a brief explanation of the process we use here at Rainier Foot & Ankle Associates.
- Don’t get out of your car when you pull into the parking lot. Just give us call and let us know you’re here and waiting. We’ll come and get you when we’re ready for you.
- You’ll be escorted (keeping appropriate social distance!) from your car, through a secondary entrance and directly into your exam room. You will not have to pass through the main entrance or stay in the waiting area.
- As with every other part of our office, we are taking extra precautions to fully sanitize every surface and area that sees traffic.
Valet services are a great choice for patients who:
- Need to come into the office for a specific treatment (i.e., they have a problem that cannot be handled remotely via telemedicine)
- Are considered “high risk” for COVID-19 or any other severe infectious diseases that could pose special health risks, or live with someone who is high risk.
That said, valet appointments are open to anyone who wants one—you don’t need to have any special qualifications.
If your appointment does not require an in-person visit (many initial consults and follow-up appointments fall into this category), telemedicine is likely a better choice. Please review our service page on telemedicine or call our office if you have any questions about this service.
If you aren’t sure whether telemedicine or a valet appointment is right for you, please don’t hesitate to call and ask.
To be clear, we are fully following all the CDC guidelines to keep our office as safe as possible during the pandemic, and that includes our main entrance and regular waiting area. We want you to feel comfortable and safe no matter which appointment type you choose.
That said, these valet services are a small extra step we are happy to take for those looking for a little extra peace of mind and the strictest possible isolation from others.
If you want to schedule an appointment (or reschedule an existing appointment), simply fill out this form to contact us:
The coronavirus pandemic has forced all of us to change our routines, and to carefully consider when it’s absolutely essential to leave your home or interact with others.
So where does that leave you if you have a concern about your feet or ankles? Do you simply sit at home and bear it until everything blows over?
No, because you have a much better option: a telemedicine appointment with Dr. Christopher Bock at Rainier Foot & Ankle Associates!
This service allows you to speak with Dr. Bock, get a visual inspection and treatment recommendations, and even review previous diagnostic or lab results remotely—without leaving the safety of home.
Is Telemedicine Right for Me?
Appointment types that work very well for a virtual consult include:
- Initial inspections. Dr. Bock can visually inspect your foot or ankle over video and give you a diagnosis and/or recommendations on the next steps.
- Check-up appointments. Your doctor can examine how a wound is healing or talk with you about how your rehab is going (after a previous treatment).
- Questions and advice. Have a question about your health care and want answers from a real medical professional? Telemedicine is by far the easiest way to do it.
Basically, as long as your appointment does not require us to perform an in-person procedure (like an injection or taking diagnostic images), we can do it over video just as well as in person.
Our telemedicine appointments are ideal for those who have to stay home due to being (or living with someone) at elevated risk of complications, or simply do not want to risk exposure.
We are using a system called Doxy.me to facilitate our telemedicine visits. We find this to be a great, easy option for our patients because they do not need to download any special software or sign up for any new accounts with new passwords to remember. The HIPAA-approved encrypted conversation happens right through your web browser!
The minimum requirements are as follows:
- A device that can support video chat. The smartphone you likely already own will do nicely, but a tablet computer or desktop/laptop with webcam and microphone are also options.
- A supported web browser. Currently this includes Chrome, Firefox, and Safari. Almost all computers and mobile devices have at least one of these browsers already installed, but if you typically use a different browser (such as Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge) you’ll need to use one of the other three for this call.
- A stable internet connection. We recommend a high-speed WiFi or wired connection as opposed to using a mobile network.
Not mandatory, but also recommended to help you get the most out of your appointment:
- A quiet, well-lit location.
- A trusted family member who lives with you, who can sit in and take notes or operate the camera when necessary.
That’s pretty much it! If you have any questions about what you may need, please let us know right away.
Here is how it works:
- Request a telemedicine appointment from our website.
- When it’s time for your appointment, click “Enter waiting room” on the link that we send to you.
- You should see a window with a place to enter your name. Do so and click “Check in.”
- If at any point your device asks you for permission to use your camera or microphone, or to turn them on, be sure you say yes!
Once you’re all set up and the doctor is ready for you, we’ll begin the call.
The process should be fairly straightforward, but again, we are here for you if you have any concerns or confusion. Call us anytime—we want to make sure this goes as smoothly as possible for you!
Is telemedicine covered by insurance?
While telemedicine services have been increasingly covered by insurance companies (including Medicare), especially in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the answer depends on your specific provider and plan.
Please contact your insurance provider to receive the latest information on whether telemedicine is covered under your plan, and to what degree.
How can you request your telemedicine appointment?
If you’re ready to request your telemedicine appointment, please complete the form on this page.
A member of our office will follow up with you during our regular office hours to schedule your appointment, make sure you have everything you need, and answer any questions you may have.
If you’d prefer, you can also reach out to us directly by phone at (360) 761-1285.
We look forward to serving you—wherever you happen to be!