Medical Clinic Referral Coordination
When your doctor recommends that you see a specialist, we can help coordinate your medical records so the specialist will have all the relevant information they need to provide care and reduce unnecessary or repeat procedures when you get there.
How do I get a referral?
At your visit, your provider will discuss your diagnosis, or the need for a referral to a specialist for additional testing. Your provider will fill out a referral form with pertinent information such as your diagnosis and the treatment/ consultations/procedures you are being referred for, as well as the urgency of your care for this concern.
How long should this take?
The referral process will be initiated within 2 days of receipt of your referral from your physician. Providers do not necessarily initiate referrals on the same day a patient is seen however every effort is made to expedite your care.
Depending on the urgency of your referral, the case load at the time of your referral and the complexity of your referral, this can be accomplished in as little as the same day in the case of urgent care needs.
For more routine or complex referrals, it may take a few days, a week or more for your records to be compiled and forwarded to your receiving provider.
If there are test or procedure results that are pertinent to your care (such as pending lab work, EKGs, other consults or hospital records etc.) this may affect the length of time it takes before all records can be sent and appointments can be made.
How do I find a specialist?
You may have a physician known to you or your provider may have a recommendation on who can best serve your health care needs.
Wrangell Medical center holds visiting physician clinics for a variety of specialties where patients can be seen through their facility. If not, your referral coordinator will make a recommendation based on known providers in Alaska. If you prefer to be seen outside of Alaska, you will need to research a provider/facility that best suits your needs.
Once we have that information, your records and demographic information will be compiled and sent to the facility/provider’s office. Most specialists will not make an appointment without first receiving this information for review.
Who makes my appointment?
Once the referral information has been sent to the receiving facility/provider, you will be contacted. Except in special circumstances, it is the responsibility of the patient to set up their own appointments.
It is important that patients be “in the loop” and know best about their availability to travel, work schedules and personal responsibilities that will affect their ability to schedule and keep their appointments. It is for this reason we ask that you take responsibility for this part of your referral.
What if I have to travel?
If you have private insurance, you must check with your insurance company regarding their policy for travel and reimbursement. You will need to arrange your travel and accommodations in accordance with their policy.
If you do not have insurance or resources to travel for services not available in Wrangell, there may be some options for assistance that you can discuss with your referral coordinator.
If covered by Alaska Medicaid, most if not all of your expenses may be covered. If services are available in the state of AK appointments must be with an AK provider. Prior authorization by Medicaid will be arranged by your referral coordinator for travel, accommodations and meals. Your referral coordinator is available to discuss the particulars of this process with you.
If you are a SEARHC beneficiary your referral and records will be forwarded to the Wrangell SEARHC referral coordinator who will handle all arrangements from that point forward. Contact 874-2715 for questions.
What if I need an escort?
In cases where it is a medical necessity as determined by your provider, insurance may cover the cost of someone to accompany you to your appointment(s). This should be part of the discussion between you and your provider when your referral is made.
Contact our Referral Coordinator at 874-5030.