I’ve heard about Dr. Henjum’s practice, but I’m not sure I understand how it works. Can you explain it?
Dr. Henjum opened a new practice in October 2005, after being in private practice in Olney since 1995 and prior to that in Silver Spring from 1989 to 1995. The new practice emphasizes courteous and professional service, longer and unhurried visits, same- or next-day sick visits, and a pleasant, comforting “old-fashioned” environment. We have made every effort to remove the frustrations and aggravations generally involved in going to the doctor.
Rather than using insurance, the only charge is an annual professional fee, which covers essentially all of Dr. Henjum’s services. There are no other bills. This level of service is virtually unheard of these days, at any price. You may call our office at 301-774-7115 to answer any questions you may have or to request that literature be mailed to your home.
I already have good insurance. Why would I pay extra to join this practice?
Even people with excellent medical coverage often find they do not have convenient access to the medical care they need. For example, when they call their doctor’s office, they may be placed on hold for an extended period of time or have to press numbers on a voicemail line to get through to a live person. When they’re finally offered an appointment, it may not be soon enough or at a time that fits their schedule. They may wait an hour or more in a crowded waiting room to be seen and then feel rushed through their visit before all their questions are answered. Simple questions aren’t answered over the phone, and they can’t send an e-mail to their doctor when they have a concern.
What does the professional fee cover?
It includes all office visits with Dr. Henjum, a comprehensive annual physical exam, and a thorough panel of blood tests. Also covered are routine immunizations, office tests like EKGs and pulmonary function studies when indicated, rapid tests for strep throat, and administration of allergy shots. In addition, our nurse draws blood, so it’s no longer necessary to wait in line at the hospital or lab when you need tests.
What if I need to be hospitalized?
Dr. Henjum maintains admitting privileges at Montgomery General Hospital in Olney. He sees his patients there regularly, whether admitted by him or another physician. Dr. Henjum is often able to facilitate communication between different specialists, patients, and their families. Dr. Henjum does not charge patients or their insurance companies for his time spent at the hospital; that is included in the annual professional fee.
I’m covered by Medicare. Can I still see Dr. Henjum?
Yes. Dr. Henjum has opted out of Medicare. Medicare will not cover any portion of the professional fee or any other related expenses. Medicare patients may, however, sign a waiver acknowledging that they agree to a private relationship with Dr. Henjum and are then welcome to join the practice. Of course, your Medicare coverage with all other doctors, hospitals, and facilities remains intact.
Is this an insurance plan?
No. This is simply a plan to see a doctor without the restrictions and frustrations associated with insurance companies, billing headaches, and paperwork.
I have medical insurance. Does it matter what kind?
No. Dr. Henjum’s program is not dependent on insurance. Your insurance is used only for other doctors, hospitals, tests, etc. In fact, it is not necessary to have insurance at all to be in the practice, though it is very strongly recommended.
I’m covered by an HMO. Can I still see Dr. Henjum?
Yes. Dr. Henjum is not a member of any HMOs. However, you are welcome to join Dr. Henjum’s practice, as long as you know that the practice’s professional fee is not covered by your insurance company and that you may still need referrals and approvals through a doctor designated by your HMO “as your primary care physician” (PCP). In some cases, we may be able to assist you in requesting these referrals from your PCP’s office, but the decision to give the referral is made by the other office and the HMO insurance company.
I’m in a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO). Can I join Dr. Henjum’s practice?
Yes. While you are responsible for the annual professional fee, you may be able to submit bills to your insurance company for reimbursement. As you have already paid Dr. Henjum, and as we are not affiliated with any insurance companies, that reimbursement is appropriately yours to keep. For insurance purposes, Dr. Henjum is considered an “out of network” physician. Reimbursement levels are determined by your particular policy and may be subject to an annual deductible.
I have a Flex Spending plan or Medical Savings Account through work. Can I use that for the annual professional fee?
In some cases, yes. Check with your plan administrator. Our practice manager is well acquainted with this question. By using pre-tax dollars designated for medical expenditures, many of our patients find these plans may reduce their out-of-pocket costs by as much as 30 to 40%.
I have high-school or college age children. Can Dr. Henjum see them?
Yes. Dr. Henjum gladly sees children 13 and older. From age 13 through age 25, the annual professional fee is reduced by half if at least one parent is also a member of the practice.
Which forms of payment do you accept?
Checks, VISA, MasterCard and Discover.
Do I need to pay the fee all at once?
No. You may choose one of three options: once a year, twice a year, or quarterly. The fee changes slightly depending which option you choose.
Will Dr. Henjum charge me anything beyond the annual professional fee?
No. However, there are some services that are not covered, such as the cost of more exotic immunizations for travelers to foreign countries, but even there the vaccine would be purchased by the patient when available and administered in our office at no charge.
This is an interesting concept. Are other doctors doing this?
Yes. A small but growing number of doctors around the country are changing to smaller, more service-oriented practices as the intrusions and frustrations of modern medicine become more difficult for patients and physicians alike. All of the practices charge additional fees for improved service, easier access, and longer unhurried appointments. This is the only practice on the East Coast that we are aware of that does not additionally charge insurance or Medicare for each visit.
Can I reach Dr. Henjum whenever I need him?
Yes. Dr. Henjum can be reached 24 hours a day through his office or answering service. He answers non-urgent questions via e-mail as time permits. If Dr. Henjum is out of town, Dr. Fields will cover his practice for emergencies and remain in touch with Dr. Henjum.
What are Dr. Henjum’s credentials?
Dr. Henjum is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis and the Albert Einstein School of Medicine in New York City. He completed his internship and residency training at the Washington Hospital Center, in Washington, D.C. He served an additional year as Chief resident of the Internal Medicine training Program, a teaching and academic position. He is board-certified in the specialty of Internal Medicine by the American Board of Internal Medicine and in the specialty of Hospice and Palliative Medicine by the American Board of Hospice and Palliative Medicine. He is a member of the American College of Physicians, the association of U.S. internists.
He is on the staff at Montgomery General Hospital in Olney, where he has served in numerous leadership positions on the medical staff.
Dr. Henjum has been listed in Best Doctors in America, Washingtonian magazine’s Top Doctors, and Washington Checkbook’s Top Doctors.
Does Dr. Henjum really make house calls?
Yes! Dr. Henjum often makes house calls in the Olney/Silver Spring area when it is not practical or possible to be seen in the office and when hospital evaluation and tests are not necessary. It is very gratifying to see someone in their home environment and can be a relief to the families of elderly or physically challenged individuals. When Dr. Henjum believes a house call is appropriate, it is included in the annual fee, and thus there is no additional charge for house calls. If a patient is homebound, and only seen on a housecall basis, a different fee structure applies.