YOUR TIME is the most valuable resource you have. This holiday season give yourself the gift of TIME.
You work hard to balance time between your career and your family. When one of your own has a health concern that “pops up” or just needs to be scheduled …. trying to figure out the how, where, and when to get the issue addressed can literally take hours, and even days, from your routine.
I get it. I’m a working mom and I know what it is like to balance work and family, to “carry” the mental load, and then…. to put “one more thing” on your plate. My job is to take that stress off your plate.
“My son has a sore throat and fever…. I have placed a call to his doctor’s office and am waiting for a call back….”
When you have medical concerns, the last thing you want is to pile on more stress. Let me help! My patients reach out to me, their physician, directly via text at any time of day. They get answers to the questions they have about their health immediately and can take the next steps and get back to their busy lives.
“My daughter cut open her foot. Do I take her to urgent care or ER and wait to be seen?”
No one has time to wait around for a return call from the doctor’s office for advice. You don’t have to sit in an urgent care with other contagious sick people waiting to be seen… then go back again the following week because you picked up a virus in the lobby while waiting. We take care of this without the wait!
“I am experiencing a constant feeling of being tired… but I just put off going to see the doctor because it is so hard to get an appointment and the visit takes up half my day.”
Let us make going to the doctor as easy as booking a time that works perfectly for your schedule. We even offer telemedicine so you can get care wherever you are. If you are visiting us, there is no waiting in a waiting room. Ever!
THIS IS NOT too good to be true!
Ditch the Healthcare Hassle. Give yourself the gift of Time!
Get all the health care needs for your family met with ease and grace. We know how valuable your time is and that is why we are making health care easy for families: one mom at a time.
Come and see how Direct Primary Care works….schedule a free initial consultation with us today and get all your questions answered.
This cold and flu season, I am getting a lot of questions about sinus infections.
So today, we are reviewing which treatments work best.
What is a sinus infection?
The sinuses, air-filled pockets in bones of the face, form the top part of the respiratory tract. A sinus infection occurs when the tissue in the sinuses swells and leads to a buildup of mucus, pain, and discomfort.
Viruses cause 9 out of 10 sinus infections in adults. Here we discuss symptoms and treatment options for Viral Sinus Infections.
Pain or pressure in your sinuses Facial pain is a common symptom of sinusitis. You have several different sinuses above and below your eyes, as well as behind your nose. Any of these air-filled cavities can hurt when you have a sinus infection. You may feel pain in your forehead, on either side of your nose, in your upper jaws and teeth, or between your eyes
Tenderness in the face Your face may also be tender to the touch due to the built-up pressure. This tends to occur at the bridge of the nose or under the eyes, and can occur on the forehead and cheeks.
Runny nose and postnasal drip When you have a sinus infection, you may need to blow your nose often because of nasal discharge. This discharge comes from your infected sinuses and drains into your nasal passages. The discharge may also bypass your nose and drain down the back of your throat causing irritation or sore throat. This is called postnasal drip, and it may cause you to cough. It can also cause your voice to sound hoarse.
Sinus headaches Persistent pressure and swelling in your sinuses can give you symptoms of a headache. Sinus pain can also cause earaches and pain in your teeth, jaws, and cheeks. Sinus headaches are often at their worst in the morning because fluids have been collecting all night long.
What can I do?
Most cases of acute sinusitis get better on their own. Self-care techniques are usually all you need to ease symptoms. In general, antibiotics are not needed and do not help symptoms (as it is usually caused by a virus anyway).
Consider the following options:
1. Pain medication Over the counter anti-inflammatory medications such as ibuprofen can provide relief of headache, facial pain, and sore throat if they are not contraindicated.
2. Intranasal steroid sprays These reduce inflammation and decrease swelling in nasal passages. This can be particularly helpful for patients with allergic symptoms as well. Commonly we use fluticasone nasal spray.
These are typically Pseudophedrine or Phenylephrine. They can relieve congestion and pressure but may cause a rebound effect when stopped. There are contraindications for some patients with high blood pressure and other risks.
4. Nasal Irrigation Using a neti pot with sterile intranasal saline is highly recommended for most. These generally provide safe and effective temporary relief.
Signs that you should seek care
Consult your doctor if you have:
a high persistent fever (>102F)
symptoms that have lasted for more than 10 days
symptoms that are getting worse
As always, it’s recommended that you check in with your physician when you are sick for a personalized diagnosis and treatment plan to best suit your individual needs.
Are you looking for a physician who is always available and easy to reach that will answer all your health care questions? Reach out today to schedule your FREE initial consultation with Dr Diaz. Space is limited
Soothing a Sore Throat…. Be in the Know this Winter.
Pharyngitis, commonly known as a sore throat, is a symptom that signals an infection involving the back of the throat.
Signs of pharyngitis include:
Sore, dry, or scratchy throat
Pain with swallowing
Redness/Inflammation of the throat
What causes Pharyngitis?
The most common cause for sore throat is a virus (such as the common cold, influenza, mononucleosis, yes …even covid). Viral infections don’t respond to antibiotics, and treatment is only necessary to help relieve symptoms.
Less commonly, pharyngitis is caused by a bacterial infection. These infections require antibiotics. The most common bacterial infection is strep throat. It is imperative not to leave strep throat untreated, especially in children.
How is pharyngitis diagnosed?
If you’re experiencing symptoms of pharyngitis, your doctor will check your throat looking for white patches, swelling, and redness and check for swollen lymph nodes in your neck. You should report any fever or cough as well.
If your doctor suspects that you have strep throat, they will likely take a rapid strep test in the office which can give you a result for strep throat in a few minutes. In some cases, a swab culture is sent to a lab for further testing.
If another cause of your pharyngitis is suspected, your doctor may order blood work looking for specific infections, such as mononucleosis or they may perform a COVID or flu test.
What can you do at home?
If a virus is causing your pharyngitis, there are things you can do at home that can help relieve symptoms:
drinking plenty of fluids/ pedialyte popsicles
gargling with warm salt water (1 teaspoon of salt per 8 ounces of water)
using a humidifier
resting until you feel better
throat lozenges can sooth pain
For pain and fever relief, consider taking over-the-counter medication such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen after speaking with your doctor.
If the infection is caused by strep or another bacterial infection, antibiotics are necessary. Amoxicillin and penicillin are the most commonly prescribed treatments for strep throat. It is important that you take the entire course of antibiotics for strep throat to prevent complications such as rheumatic fever.
How can you prevent pharyngitis?
avoid sharing food, drinks, and eating utensils
avoid individuals who are sick
wash your hands often, especially before eating and after coughing or sneezing
use alcohol-based hand sanitizers
avoid smoking and inhaling secondhand smoke
When to Seek Care
Let your doctor know right away if you are having a sore throat so that they can guide you on the next steps for evaluation of cause and best treatment options.
Looking for a doctor that you can text anytime and is easy to reach quickly? Book a Meet and greet with Dr Diaz today.
The THINGS you DID NOT EVEN THINK to consider this Open Enrollment…..
How can I keep my costs low AND receive high quality accessible health care?
Every year we pay more for insurance while less and less is covered. When we attempt to use our insurance it is cumbersome and inconvenient at best. We have all experienced the frustration with the amount of time it requires to obtain what we need for our health and get it covered by insurance. Today we cover the basics and empower you to make decisions that will give you the most cost-effective way to obtain the high quality health care you deserve
Premium: the amount you pay every month for health insurance. Deductible: the amount you must pay before you can get any services covered by your insurance in a calendar year. A few Caveats to the deductible: Not everything counts towards your deductible. Premiums and copays generally don’t count. Some plans have separate deductibles for prescriptions.
Copay: a fixed amount you pay for a covered expense (visits, procedures, medications, etc) Out-of-pocket maximum: the most you might have to spend for covered services in a given year. This number is important to understand! HDHP is a High-deductible Health Plan (HDHP): these plans offer lower monthly premiums and allow you qualify for a Health Savings Account (HSA) HSA is a Health Savings Account: A type of savings account that lets you set aside money on a pre-tax basis to pay for qualified medical expenses. Health Share Plans*: this is not an insurance product and offers much lower monthly premiums with low initial unshareable amount (similar to a deductible). *A cooperative where members “share” medical costs. They cover catastrophic needs (hospital stay, surgery, ER visit, etc) but are not insurance products.
What your typical open enrollment conversation is missing!!!
Smart consumers determine their out of pocket projected cost for the year and choose a high deductible plan to save on monthly premiums. Savvy consumers understand the relationship between premiums and deductibles and keep costs low by determining the most cost-effective way to lower their out of pocket-expenses over the course of the entire year.
REMEMBER HEALTH CARE DOES NOT NEED TO BE EXPENSIVE.
Direct Primary Care: The impossible Made Simple and Transparent.
Direct Primary Care (DPC) removes insurance companies from the physician-patient relationship and provides the vast majority of health care services through a low monthly fee (like a gym membership). Patients skip the hassle of traditional insurance-based care. They get more time with their physician with same day and next day appointments… all without copays or hidden fees. DPC can produce tremendous savings on out of pocket expenses when patients work with their DPC physician to find the most cost-effective appropriate health care. The enormous savings on medications, labs, and imaging often exceed the annual cost of membership.
Can you imagine if you could have easily accessible high quality health care with access to your doctor whenever you needed it AND pay less out of pocket? Have a cough and fever but dont want to go to the urgent care? ….. skip the line and the copay! Urinary tract infection while on vacation out of state?…. no problem we got you covered.
“Dr Diaz is accountable and easy to reach. I feel well taken care of and trust I am in good hands.“ – M.C.
M.C. saved 97% on her bloodwork. Imagine getting 97% OFF… you read that right! This patient had labs with Roots Health DPC and paid $29.57. The same patient had the exact samelabs billed (for the same tests) at a price of $901.24 through the same lab.
At Roots Health DPC we get it. Your health and wellness are our main goaland we are here to support our patients as they make decisions that will affect their well-being.
Open enrollment only comes once per year… make the most of it and choose the best plan to meet your health care needs. Its your money. Its your healthcare. Its your choice.
If you want to learn more about how direct primary care can help you achieve your health care goals and save you money, sign up for our free guide: “Better Healthcare for a Fraction of the Price”
Breast Cancer Screening is for women without symptoms. However, if you notice
any symptoms of breast cancer you should see your doctor for an evaluation
promptly regardless of when you were last screened.
The warning signs of Breast Cancer
1. If you notice a lump that feels firm or fixed in the breast or underarm area 2. Swelling, warmth, redness or darkening of the breast skin 3. Change in the size or shape of the breast including dimpling or puckering of skin 4. Nipple retraction or change in position of nipple 5. Discharge from your nipple
Although the vast majority of breast cancers are found through abnormal mammograms, up to 30% of breast cancer patients present with a mass that occurs between mammograms.
Many of us have been touched by breast cancer- perhaps through a personal diagnosis- or by a family member, friend, or colleague diagnosed with this disease. Breast cancer, after all, is the most frequently diagnosed cancer and leading cause of cancer death in women. Please join me over the next few Mondays to discuss prevention, screening, and warning signs.
Education is Key for Prevention
Do you know the risk factors associated with an INCREASED risk for breast cancer?
Hormonal factors can influence your risk for breast cancer. Higher levels of endogenous estrogen and hormonal combined estrogen/progesterone replacement has been associated with increased risk of developing breast cancer.
Reproductive factors associated with a higher breast cancer risk include earlier onset of menstruation, not giving birth or having first child later in life, and a late menopause.
Family history and genetic mutations. The risk of breast cancer is affected by the number of first-degree female relatives diagnosed with breast cancer and the age at which they were diagnosed.
The highest breast cancer risk occurs among White women (although it remains he most common cancer among women of every major ethnic/racial group).
Alcohol consumption is associated with a higher risk of breast cancer.
A higher BMI in postmenopausal women is associated with increased risk for breast cancer.
Do you know how to DECREASE your risk for breast cancer?
Breastfeeding. For every 12 months of breastfeeding there is an approximate 4% reduction in the relative risk of breast cancer.
Increased physical activity at all ages lowers risk.
Dietary factors may modify breast cancer risk although data is limited. Eating a low-fat high fiber diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables is recommended.
This is part ONE of a THREE part series on Breast Cancer Awareness. STAY TUNED. Next week we will review breast cancer screening options and recommendations.
Want to make sure you don’t miss the next “Mondays with your MD?” Tell me where to send it to you!
Reminiscent of a time where patients could receive medical advice by simply calling their doctor on the phone….telemedicine, popularized with the pandemic, has always been a structured integral part of Direct Primary Care (DPC). Virtual care has been shown to increase access to health care and lead to improved health outcomes when utilized correctly.
Telemedicine allows for an ongoing dialogue between patients and physicians about shared health goals and decision-making. This improves adherence to the medical plan of care by providing a platform for a collaborative approach to health, where chronic conditions can be managed.
Telemedicine provides flexibility for scheduling and eliminates barriers between physicians and patients. Follow up appointments are made easier by removing travel times, childcare concerns, and time off work.
Virtual consultations can prevent unnecessary in-person referrals to specialists and lead to shorter waiting times to see specialists.
Telemedicine has always been a structured integral part of (DPC). When patients have an urgent care need or a follow up concern from previous visits, DPC physicians are able to quickly troubleshoot those problems with patients and determine the best course of action for each individual.
People ask me all the time…. What is Direct Primary Care?
Focused on your health.
In a traditional fee for service primary care practice, doctors are paid based on how many people they see, number of tests they order, or type of procedures they do. This leads to our current system of rapid visits with many tests and quick referrals. Many times doctors cannot take the the time to really listen, or think about what is best for your health from the patient perspective. In the existing system, doctors are not reimbursed for emails or phone calls and this creates a system where it becomes difficult to speak to your doctor outside of a harried office visit that you may have been waiting a long time for.
In direct primary care, instead of paying for each visit or procedure, you pay a monthly fee. This monthly fee frees the physician from the model that promotes productivity over quality and allows your physician to focus on you and what you really need. This leads to more time with your doctor when you need it and convenient easy access outside the doctor’s “office visit” by phone, text, email, etc.
The doctor you call. The doctor you trust.
Direct primary care doctors are dedicated to provide the high-quality unhurried care that is essential for your wellbeing and ongoing maintenance of your health. You can see your direct primary care doctor for all routine and preventive services like checkups as well as urgent care and chronic care management. Many times having this relationship with your physician and the access it provides, can save you visits to more expensive venues like the urgent care, hospital or emergency room.
At Roots Health DPC, we are making medications affordable for our patients. How?
We buy medications at wholesale pricing and sell them to our patients directly at wholesale cost – without marking them up. We remove the profit takers, pharmacy benefit managers, and retail pharmacies between patients and their medications, effectively lowering the cost of prescriptions by 50% to 90%.
Examples of medications for under $5/month
A simple idea to solve a complex problem
DPC stands for Direct Primary Care – we deliver health care services, including medications, directly to our patients. We provide medications at these rates because we believe that the people in our community deserve fair pricing on the medications they need to stay healthy. At Roots Health DPC, we are uniquely qualified to partner with our patients to determine which medications will best treat their medical conditions.
We all know that transparent pricing in health care services is rare. It can be different now.
In the traditional health care system, patients often asked me why they had received outrageous bills for their medical care and what they could do about it. I got tired of watching patients struggle with medical bills. I felt powerless in my ability to deliver the health care my patients deserved. Even worse, I knew that the financial health of my patients directly affected their physical and emotional health.
Did you know that medical bills are the most common cause for U.S. bankruptcies? Common sense would dictate that transparent pricing is an integral part of excellent health care.
Most hospitals are still NOT compliant with posting prices to their website even though it has been a law since Jan 1,2021! It is now your rightto know the financial implications of the care that you receive.
Excellent health care does not have to be expensive.
There are numerous services that allow you to compare the price of health care. One of my favorite sites is “turquoise.health” where the cost of local medical procedures/tests can be compared.
I believe patients should always know how much a service will cost be before they receive care.
At Roots Health DPC, we negotiate lab costs directly with the laboratory and obtain lab studies at significantly discounted prices which are listed on our website. Shortly after we opened our doors we charged one of our first patients $32.45 for a panel of standard labs. When that patient received another bill for $927.86 from the lab she contacted the lab directly and was offered a “self-pay” discount of $250.00. Since the bill was an error, ultimately she did not incur a charge at all. The value of this experience was priceless for my patient and myself as we realized just how wildly variable pricing can be, and just how little transparency exists.
No one deserves to be saddled with an insurmountable pile of medical bills.
All of us deserve transparent pricing and, in fact, it is our right.