Important Things to Keep in Mind When Picking a Wound Care Specialist

Most people experience a non-healing wound at some point during their lives. Microorganisms like bacteria, viruses and fungi can cause skin infections. Some people simply don’t heal well because of health-related problems. For example, a patient might have a dysfunctional immune system or disease that affects circulation. They might also have difficulty absorbing nutrients that their body needs to heal properly or take medications that interfere with healing. Since non-healing wounds can occur for so many different reasons, family doctors often refer their patients to wound care specialists.

Finding the Right Doctor

It’s critical that you always take the time to research local wound care specialists before making an appointment. You shouldn’t trust a referral alone. Some doctors merely refer their patients to specialists from lists of in-network providers that healthcare systems and insurance companies recommended to them. A doctor might also refer a patient to a retired or disgraced specialist who another patient recommended months or years ago. Additionally, wounds don’t always heal at the same rate. Once your treatments start, your wound might only take a week or month. That said, if you’re experiencing chronic wound difficulties, you might find yourself visiting a wound care specialist for months or possibly even one or more years.

To guarantee that you have the best possible outcome and most pleasant experience possible, use the following guide to help you make an informed decision:

Expert Skills

Any wound care specialist that you consider should have appropriate national and state medical certifications and a strong wound care work history. In addition, the specialist should have hands-on experience with your specific type of wound and access to new treatments and cutting-edge technologies. You should be able to find details on the specialist’s website and patient review sites, through your local healthcare system’s patient advocate and via medical journals and industry news articles.

Office Options

Your wound or wounds might require in-office visits one or more times a week for a long time. Examination or treatment during an office visit might also result in extra pain or fatigue. It’s important that you pick a wound care specialist who has a close, local office. If you can’t find a local, condition-specific expert and need treatments for a year or longer, you should consider moving to an area that has more specialist and office options.

Payment Views

Lastly, always ask for a detailed breakdown of how a specialist handles billing and payments. Insurance carriers don’t always cover every wound care service. Some specialists require that a patient who has a health maintenance organization or charity care plan pay a certain amount up front or agree to a finance plan that might include a deposit and interest. Also, many wound care doctors charge for services based on a mix of packages and individual services. For example, a specialist might charge a package fee that includes an initial exam and consultation, and then charge a separate, higher fee for photographs that they take of the wound for their records during the same exam.