On this page you will find information about our practice policies and procedures. Additional forms may be found on our patient web portal.
Durable Medical Equipment
All requests for durable medical equipment and supplies (diabetes testing, shoes, mobility scooters, heating pads, back braces, mattresses, knee/elbow/ankle sleeves etc) will need to be initiated by the patient. We will no longer sign faxed documents to our department that are from durable medical equipment companies, without the patient initiating the request first.
Please request refills at the time of your visit, via the web portal, or by contacting your pharmacy. Please plan ahead for prescription refills. Please allow 24-48 hours to process your refill request. Also it is important to note that prescriptions for controlled substances cannot be called into the pharmacy and may take longer to process. Narcotic prescriptions will not be called in after hours under any circumstances.
The providers at Valley Medical Associates have been working closely with leading pain management experts over the past few months to develop a better, safer and more effective protocol for patients who need narcotic medications to control chronic pain. After a careful review of best practices in pain management and a thorough accounting of our prescription practices, we have made several adjustments in the way we prescribe to, monitor and manage patients with chronic pain.
These changes include:
1. A New Pain Management Agreement Between Patient and Provider- This contract will help patients understand the role of long-term narcotic medications
in the management of chronic pain and the responsibilities of both the patient and provider. This agreement must be signed by the patient and documented in their medical record.
2. On-going Review of the Pain Management Plan- All patients who have a long-term need for narcotics must see their provider to review their pain
management plan every 3 months.
3. Three-Month Prescriptions- Patients with chronic pain will be given three one month prescriptions for narcotic medications. This will streamline the
prescription process. These prescriptions will be given at your appointment with the provider every 3 months. We at Valley Medical Associates are confident these changes will improve our management of chronic pain among our patients and we look forward to working with you to provide you with the best possible pain management
Occasionally, your provider may recommend that you consult with a specialist for a medical problem. We will make every effort to make sure that the process goes smoothly for you, but we do need your help. If your insurance requires a referral to a specialist, we ask that you call us with the following information:
Please note in order to process an insurance referral authorization, the following information is required:
The full name of the provider you are scheduled to see. If you are being treated by a facility (typically physical or occupational therapy offices) we will need the facility name.
The telephone number of the specialty office.
The first date of service with the specialist.
The diagnosis you were referred for treatment of, for example foot pain, acne, or abdominal pain. Please note, “follow up” is not a diagnosis.
Missing information will delay the processing of your referral.
Again, please leave us messages about needed referrals via the web portal or by speaking with one of our receptionists (413) 739-0669.
Please keep in mind;
Most insurance companies only allow referrals to be back dated by 90 days.
Some specialty offices may refuse to see you if no insurance referral authorization is in place at the time of your visit.
A referral to a provider outside your insurance company’s network, know as an “Out of Network” referral, will take longer to process and require more detailed information. Please note your insurance company ultimately approves or denies “Out of Network” referrals requests.
For new referrals, you may be asked to see your provider first, so that we can triage the problem. Some problems may be easily managed without a specialist. If you need to see a specialist, we may be able to undertake the initial workup through our office so that your time with the specialist is spent more efficiently.
Patient privacy laws require that our office obtain a signed release form in order to release patient records to the following entities;
Life Insurance Company
Primary Care Provider
Life insurance companies and law office medical records requests require a $40.00 prepayment to our office. Please note we accept cash or check payments, addressed to Valley Medical Associates. Please allow two weeks for records request from the date of prepayment.
A signed medical release is required for our office to obtain your medical record from your previous primary care provider, and also for our office to forward your medical record to a new primary care provider.
Please note the complete office contact information is required;
Name of Primary Care Provider
Full mailing address
Telephone and fax number
It is our policy not to fax entire medical records; instead we mail them directly to the primary care office. If you would rather your record be released to you directly to bring to you new primary care, we can arrange to have you pick it up from our office. Please note there is a copy fee which is no more than $10.00 per patient or family. It is our policy not to mail entire medical records to a patient directly. Upon receipt of the medical release, please allow 7-10 business days for record transfers.
A record of immunizations can be faxed directly to the patient’s school or camp with out a release, and typically can be processed the same day.
A record of physical exams or well child checks do require a signed release form and take 7-10 business days.
Patient privacy laws require we obtain a signed consent form in order to communicate with a family member about a patient.
All medical records request can be left on the medical records department voice mail or submitted via the patient web portal. Please allow 24 hours for our medical records department to return your call.