Dr Joel Hass

My approach to practicing medicine has always been to think first! In medical school, I was told many times that the history and physical exam will give the complete picture most of the time. I have found this to be true much more often than not. For this reason, I am very careful not to order frivolous testing. I make it a point to explain my thought process. If there are no good reasons to order a particular test, then it should not be done as the risk of false positive results and harm to you increases!

Routine health testing such as pap smears for women every 5 years and for those with average risk for colon cancer a colonoscopy starting at age 45 years saves lives. I have always worked diligently to get all my patients to schedule and have the screening tests appropriate for their sex and age.

All medications have risks; Therefore, I am very cautious with regards to prescribing. A great example is antibiotics. They have always been a great addition to the practice of medicine; however, their use in treating the common cold or bronchitis in the average person is inappropriate and risky. For this reason, I do not prescribe them for these conditions.

Virtual visits are a great addition to the practice of medicine; however, they too have their limitations. I use virtual visits for the initial patient intake, simple complaints and follow ups that do not require a physical exam. As you can imagine, looking in your ear, listening to your chest or doing a strep screen cannot be done during a virtual visit. For this reason, if during a virtual visit, there are issues that I cannot assess well or I feel that I need to see you in office, I will insist on an in-person office visit. As a general rule, it is always better to come in.

As balancing time and care has been a challenge for as long as I have been practicing, there are times when addressing an issue, I may need to break things up by scheduling multiple visits. This will help me avoid overlooking something important and increase my ability to understand all as best as I can. I have found that trying to do too much during a visit many times lends to mistakes and oversights. Please be patient as I take patient safety very seriously.

In general, referrals will not be given over the phone. I really want to see you first. That said, if you had missed a screening test or if there is a chronic issue that I know about please call or message. If I am comfortable, I will work with you.

Lastly, if you suffer from any chronic condition(s) that require frequent office visits, testing, and regular prescriptions, you will be expected to attend all your scheduled office visits and be compliant with all recommendations.

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