Additional Information

This clinic is operated with one simple assumption.....State of the Art, "Standard of Care" medical services can be provided at rational prices. You are a patient, not a customer in my clinic. Cumberland Medical Associates, PC is dedicated to providing care to people without health insurance and/or high deductible insurance plans, or the inability to obtain appointments with their primary physician.

As a result, I do not deal with insurance companies. They are the problem, not the solution. Approximately 35% of your premium goes immediately to the insurance company, and none of that money provides you with any care. They provide no care, and no benefit to the patient, in my opinion. Catastrophic illness is the exception. In many cases your drug "benefit" is just another profit center where the wholesale cost of your medicine is actually far less than your co-pay.

I employ no staff, and appointments are one hour to allow sufficient time to interview you and completely explain the physiology and rationale of the recommended treatment plan. When you arrive, you can anticipate no waiting time. Additionally, there will be no other patients waiting in the office exposing you to contageous illnesses. I take no short cuts. My recommendations come from current medical literature, CDC guidelines, "Evidenced Based Medicine", and I am not influenced by Pharmaceutical reps. Your records remain on-site and are not connected to any network, insurance company, or pharmacy chain. Any medications dispensed or prescribed are recorded only in your record which you have access to at any time. Your records are available to other parties only with your express written permission or a court order.

Implementing this model for practicing primary care, I had to be willing to accept a lower income. I have no desire to run patients in and out, and provide minimal care to the patient, potentially compromising the safety of the patient. My approach is meticulous and thorough. There is nothing in the business model of this clinic to generate wealth for the physician. All unnecessary overhead has been eliminated.

Records are maintained by simply scanning to .pdf written notes of each encounter, conversation, or phone consultation. Studies have shown that Electronic Medical Record systems diminish physician productivity by 30% or more. In my opinion, they are designed to monitor what the physician is doing, the amount of revenue he or she is generating, and do not enhance the care that a dedicated physican provides to his/her patients. Unnecessary testing or imaging is not ordered. I order lab studies or imaging that in my opinion are necessary to ensure the safety of the patient. If you require the completion of insurance, disability, Social Security, FMLA, or other forms, kindly make an appointment for that purpose. There will be a nominal fee as compensation for my time.

Call me directly with your questions and concerns, and I will give it to you straight. My policy is that I will not call in prescriptions or refills of antibiotics, or other prescription medications for an acute illness that I have not evaluated face to face. High blood pressure is the number one cause of kidney failure in the US, and I require my patients with hypertension to undergo an inexpensive lab evaluation every six months to ensure that your condition is not damaging your kidneys. Blood pressure medicatons will not be refilled unless you have undergone this lab evaluation by me or another physician who can send a copy of the results. I will not refill anti-depressants over the phone as I see that as providing medical care for no compensation, and I believe that patients managed for depression or other related problems should be seen at regular intervals and evaluated by their doctor to ensure their safety. I do not manage chronic psychiatric or chronic pain requiring antidepressants or pain medications, and my policy is not to prescribe or dispense controlled substances. Safety and the well-being of the patient requires a physician who is specially trained and experienced in the management of these problems. I will refer you to a specialist if your illness requires specialized care. Please do not fax or email forms for me to fill out and fax back, or to forward to other parties. If you need forms to be filled out and signed, please make an appointment. Ensure that everything on the form that refers to your medical history, medications taken, and personal information is filled out when you arrive. A small fee may be charged for the time taken to accomplish the completion of your paperwork.

Ted A. Carter, MD
Family Medicine and Travel Medicine
FAA Senior Aviation Medical Examiner

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