Doctor's Corner

Office Policies

Scheduling appointments: Please make sure your follow-up appointment is scheduled before leaving the office. You may also schedule appointments by calling the front office or through the Patient Portal.

Canceling appointments: Appointments are confirmed at least 24 – 48 hours in advance. If you need to cancel your appointment, please do so at least 24 hours (48 hours for new patient appointments) prior to your appointment in order to allow another patient the opportunity for that appointment slot. There is a nation-wide shortage of Rheumatologists. A 6 month wait for a new patient appointment is not unusual.  Unconfirmed new patient appointments will be canceled.  In order to enforce our cancellation policy, patients who do not show up for confirmed appointments will be assessed a $50 no-show fee. This fee is not covered by your medical insurance.

Refilling medications: Most medications are prescribed electronically (e-prescribe).  Please obtain all of your medication refills at the time of your office visit. This ensures accurate and timely refills and prevents necessitating multiple telephone calls. Keep in mind that we only refill medications we prescribe. You will reed to obtain your other medications from your other physicians. If you need a refill between appointments please ask your pharmacist to initiate an electronic refill request. You also may leave a refill request on the prescription line voicemail.  Allow at least 48 hours for processing of refill requests. A refill request may trigger a call for you to schedule an appropriate office visit for management of your condition and monitoring of your medications. Schedule II narcotic medications prescriptions require office visits every 3 months (state law). Controlled medications will not he refilled after hours or during weekends.

Urgent follow-up appointments: In order to better serve you and to avoid excessive appointment waits, you may be asked to schedule with Devin Weidman, ARNP for urgent appointments, when Dr. Houri,  Dr. Fiske and Dr. Rivera have fully booked schedules.

Communicating with the doctor: To avoid busy phone lines and excessive telephone on-hold times we have a secure voicemail system for you to leave messages for the doctors. Messages are retrieved throughout day and reviewed, by the doctors. The staff is well trained to answer most messages as instructed by the doctors. If needed, the doctor will return phone calls after office hours.  Remember to leave your contact number!

After hours calls: If you have a medical emergency please call 911 or go to the emergency room. If you have a rheumatologic emergency that can not wait until we reopen, please call 283-8380 and leave a message for the doctor on call. Please do not leave non-emergency calls such as appointment changes or prescription refill requests on the after hours voicemail.

All patients must have a Primary Care Physician:  Our practice is limited to the specialty of rheumatology. Therefore you need to have a PCP for non-rheumatology medical care. Dr. Houri, Dr. Fiske and Dr. Rivera do not admit patients to the hospital. Hospital consultation services are provided on a limited basis only at  Cleveland Clinic Martin Health North.

Patient privacy: Your privacy is very important to us and to ensure your privacy you may be asked to provide a picture ID to verify you identity upon arrival at the office.  Please refer to the HIPPA privacy policy booklet in the waiting area.

Request for medical records: We will gladly forward your medical records to your doctor.  You may be asked to sign a medical records authorization form. Copy charges will apply for personal records requests.

Requests for radiograph copies: Radiographs represent your permanent medical records in this office and are stored digitally. You may request a CD copy of your radiographs. Copy charges will apply.

Insurances: We accept Medicare, Aetna, Blue Cross, Cigna, and others. You are responsible for your co-pays and deductibles.  By federal law and contract deductibles and co-pays may not be waived.

Insurance office visit authorization: Some insurance companies require a referral authorization from your PCP prior to being seen. This is your responsibility to obtain insurance authorizations.

Medicare Assignment:  We accept Medicare assignment which means we accept the Medicare fee schedule.  This is subject to change in the future. We will file your Medicare insurance. We do not file secondary insurances. You are responsible for Medicare deductible and co-pays according to federal law.