What you should know
Frequently Asked Questions
Have a question? We may have your answer below.
What is SpecialtyCare Connect®?
SpecialtyCare Connect is designed to connect you with the best possible healthcare specialists when you need them the most. Our unique, unbiased service is based on extensive research of tens of thousands of specialists. We not only look at their degree and medical training, we evaluate the depth of their experience with medical conditions exactly like yours. We also match the experience of the specialists with the specific criteria that is important to you – such as location, insurance acceptance and appointment availability.
If you’re looking to empower your members or employees with better healthcare choices, contact us today.
How do you determine the right doctor for me?
Our world-renowned Clinical Advisory Board is comprised of top physicians in a wide variety of specialties. This board has spent the past decade refining its evidence-based and outcome-driven physician evaluation process. The result is a database of tens of thousands of objectively screened physicians across 200 subspecialties of care.
From routine procedures to life-threatening vents, our Care Consultants evaluate the specific needs of each diagnosis, so we can match you with the physicians that are most appropriate.
There is no legal or financial relationship with any of the physicians we recommend. The recommendations provided to each member are based solely on an informed understanding of the patient’s diagnosis matched with the expertise of the physician.
What does it cost?
There is no cost to use this service when it is provided through your employer or association. Individuals not associated with a group can also purchase this benefit for themselves.
Am I obligated to use the recommended physicians?
We give you a choice from at least three specialists who are evaluated on quality and objective-based medicine; however, you are not obligated to see any of these physicians.
How do I request a specialist?
If you have access to our services through a plan sponsor or association, you can enroll online by using the 6-digit access code they provided in an email to immediately begin a request for physician recommendations.
Your plan sponsor may have also emailed a link to a custom website for case initiation, bypassing the eligibility step.
Alternatively, if you know you have access and you can’t locate your access code or custom website, you can email SpecialtyCare Connect or call us at 888-302-5735 and provide your plan sponsor or association, and we’ll verify your eligibility and help you get started with connecting you to the right doctor.
We will provide the ability for consumers to buy the service directly later this year.
How long does it take?
Within one to two business days, we’ll send you a care packet that provides you with at least three specialists that match your exact criteria and, most importantly, are best suited to treat your condition. This information will include background information on the recommended specialists along with directions to their office and instructions on what to bring with you (e.g. test results, medical records).
How often can I use the service?
You can request a specialist as often as necessary throughout the year at no additional cost.
Why is this service better than a referral from a PCP, an online search or recommendations from a friend?
Locating the best possible specialist for your health condition requires time for an in-depth review of medical credentials to identify those specialists that are the best match for YOUR specific health condition and have the greatest level of expertise. This safeguards you from receiving an incorrect diagnosis and unsuccessful treatment.
We also ensure the recommended specialists accept your insurance and have appointment availability, which is often not an option when using other sources.
There is no legal or financial relationship with any of the physicians we recommend. The physicians recommended to each member are first and foremost based on an informed understanding of the patient’s diagnosis matched with the
expertise of the physician.
Do I need a diagnosis to use this service? What if I don’t have one yet?
Our services are designed to match you with the best possible healthcare specialist or surgeon based on your specific medical condition and needs. We do not practice medicine, so it’s important to have a diagnosis from your primary care doctor which allows us to provide you with the most accurate match possible.
Once you have a proper diagnosis or a working diagnosis, we will then be able to identify multiple specialists that have the most expertise in that area as well as meet additional criteria you choose.
My health insurance doesn’t require a referral for specialists, so why do I need to see a Primary Care or Urgent Care doctor first?
One of our goals is to avoid sending you to an inappropriate specialist which increases cost for healthcare and delays proper treatment. Seeing a primary care physician first gives us a “working diagnosis” to ensure that we are recommending the proper specialist. Your primary care doctor can take care of any testing or imaging that may be required for an accurate diagnosis.
Many specialists require that you first see a primary care doctor before scheduling an appointment with them. They may also ask to see your lab work and medical records prior to scheduling an appointment with you.
Are there times when a self-referral to a specialist is appropriate?
Yes, although we always encourage you to consult with your primary care doctor as a first step in your medical care.
The following conditions can be appropriate for self-referrals:
- Elective procedures (LASIKS, vasectomy, cosmetic and reconstructive procedures, colonoscopy)
- OB-GYN (routine care, fertility issues, obstetrics)
- Dermatology (non-oncology assessment including skin checks, esthetic procedures)
- Orthopaedic evaluation (obvious fractures and sprains)
If you are uncertain as to your exact diagnosis, we can guide you to a general specialist to confirm a suspected diagnosis.
Will you make sure the doctors are in my network?
Yes –we will specifically research specialists that accept your insurance and meet any other criteria you require. We’ll also verify this information with the specialists before providing you with recommendations. If we are unable to find in-network specialists that meet your preferences, we will clearly identify the physicians we recommend as out of network to ensure you know this before making your selection.
Can you help me find a specialist that can accommodate my special needs?
When you contact us to locate a specialist, please let us know of any special needs that are important to you and we’ll do our best to identify specialists that are able to meet your needs. We want your experience to be as comfortable and stress-free as possible, so we strive to find physicians that accommodate your needs including language preferences, hearing and vision assistance, sign language, and many more.
Is my information protected and kept confidential?
We comply with HIPAA practices and incorporate a high level of data encryption into our systems to ensure that your health and personal information is kept private. We do not share any of your records with your employer or any other entity unless otherwise required by law. Requesting a specialist for those under 18 years of age must be done by a parent.
Are there any healthcare specialties for which you don’t match members with physicians?
We only provide recommendations to medical physicians (MDs and DOs); therefore we are unable to offer information for the following healthcare services at this time:
- Dental care
- Addiction treatment
- Physical therapy
- Occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- Genetic counselors
- Integrated medicine and naturopathy
- Mental health-psychiatry, behavioral health, psychologist, therapist or social workers
Do doctors pay to be a part of this service?
SpecialtyCare Connect has no financial or legal affiliations with the medical specialists that are recommended through this service. Doctors cannot apply to be in our database.