Heart Spring Health Reception FlowersEmpowering your healing journey

Here are some answers to common questions of Heart Spring Health patients. Some may apply to you. If you have questions that are not answered here, please feel free to contact us at any time.

Will my appointments at Heart Spring Health be covered by my insurance plan?

Most Heart Spring Health services are covered by insurance plans. If you are planning on using insurance to pay for your visit, please inquire about your benefits before you make your initial appointment. More information about insurance can be found here.

How often will I be treated?

You can expect to see your practitioner between three to four times in the first month. During this time we will do a thorough analysis of the state of your condition and begin to understand you as a whole person. While it is likely you will begin to feel better quickly, it is important that you receive care throughout the healing process to help ensure a complete recovery and long-lasting results.

The frequency and duration of follow-up care is different for everyone. After about four visits, generally, enough information has been collected to create a treatment plan that takes into account your unique healthcare needs.  Your treatment plan will depend upon the nature of your condition, its state of progression, your constitutional makeup and your desired level of health.

Some factors that will influence any healing process are: your lifestyle and habits, your commitment to care, the extent to which you take an active role in your health, your constitutional makeup, and the severity of your condition. If you have been unwell for some time it is important to know that the restoration of health will also take time.

What about lab work?

At Heart Spring Health in Portland, Oregon many of our providers are trained to order necessary lab work as well as interpret the results and provide treatment. We use local laboratories that are covered by insurance so the blood draw and testing will be completed at one site. In some cases, we will draw your blood and send it to the lab for evaluation.

In an effort to deliver comprehensive and innovative care we also use the latest functional labs to assess your health.  In many cases these labs are considered out of network with some insurance plans. In these cases, we advise you pay for the labs out of pocket before sending the results in and ask your insurance to reimburse you.  This will ensure you get the best prices for your lab work.

What if I’m not feeling well but laboratory results do not indicate a problem?

Compared to other countries, the general American population does not operate at a high level of health. And “normals” for laboratory results are averaged from our general population.

Our Naturopathic doctors and natural health providers look at laboratory results a little differently than M.D.s – and as a result, we offer patients more nuanced information. This may help you understand the subtleties of why you’re not feeling well and how your lifestyle may be impacting your health, so you can get back on the road to feeling great again.

The nature of Chinese medicine allows it to recognize imbalance in the body before symptoms or irregular lab tests occur.  It is often said, ‘waiting to do something until symptoms appear is like waiting to dig a well until you’re already thirsty.’  Often, a pattern of imbalance becomes apparent to a Chinese medicine practitioner when the combination of pulse, tongue, subtle skin colors, vocal intonations, and minor signs and symptoms are known.  This pattern of imbalance could also be causing you to feel less than your best, yet not show up with any significant lab results.

Applied Kinesiology also gives us a way to identify subtle or not so subtle imbalances before they manifest as disease or condition that is more difficult to treat.  It also gives us a way to help you feel better when your medical doctor may not have any answers or treatments for you.

How do our Portland natural medicine providers define “optimal health”?

From a naturopathic perspective, optimal health means more than simply being free of physical symptoms. We also believe that an individual’s mental, emotional and spiritual life play a big part in their overall well being.

When people are healthy, they generally report having energy, feeling light and alive, and experiencing a deep sense of peace, freedom, confidence, joy, and gratitude for life. At Heart Spring Health, we support you in establishing (and sustaining) your unique picture of optimal health.

Why does my pain keep coming back?

We understand the importance of finding the cause of your symptoms. Your Provider will explore and address factors in your life that may be contributing to your pain, including:

  • Physical: Hidden muscle tightness or imbalances, gait or posture issues, joint fixation, weakness or instability
  • Nutritional: food intolerance or allergy, nutrient deficiency
  • Emotional or psychological: physical symptoms associated with stress, anxiety and depression.
  • Environmental: workplace and home activities, hobbies
  • Injury: trauma to the body from an accident that happened recently or long ago

Can I seek natural care and standard care at the same time?

Yes! Natural medicine works well in conjunction with standard medical care; in fact, it often helps improve the results and reduce the side-effects of treatments you are receiving.

You may find that with treatment at Heart Spring Health, you will need to reduce your doses of prescription medication and eventually may not even need them at all. You might also find that you can cancel a scheduled surgery or other more invasive and expensive treatments.  Please tell both your MD and your Heart Spring Health practitioner about any other providers you are working with so they can coordinate care and make any medication adjustments as necessary.

Natural medicine can also help support the body during transitional phases (such as pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause etc.) and intensive standard treatment (such as chemotherapy, radiation, etc). Many patients pursue both standard and naturopathic care in such circumstances, and they get the greatest benefit when all of their care providers are working together.

We offer supportive treatment for pre and post surgery, imaging, and for a wide range of conditions requiring the use of long-term pharmaceuticals. We can help by simply treating the side effects of standard treatment and/or by supporting your body so that it can respond optimally to restore itself through healing on all levels.

Do I need a referral from my doctor to see any of the providers at Heart Spring Health?

In Oregon, most insurance plans do not require a referral for you to see a Chiropractor, Naturopathic physician, acupuncturist, or massage therapist. In the event you need a referral we will let you know before your first scheduled visit.

If I'm taking prescription medications will natural medicines interfere?

There are certain drug-nutrient and drug-herbal interactions that should be taken into consideration. We are aware of the possibilities and will avoid interactions. For this reason it is important that you provide your doctor(s) with a list of all current medications.

Can Naturopathic Doctors prescribe prescription drugs?

Licensed ND’s can prescribe prescription drugs but choose to do so when it is a necessary form of action.  Naturopathic physicians generally use lifestyle management and natural remedies that facilitate healing on a deep level without the use of prescription medications.  In the event a prescription drug is indicated licensed ND’s are well trained in pharmacology and will provide you with choices, as well as take into account any allergies or interactions.

What if I need additional workup or treatment?

Naturopathic physicians and the other providers at Heart Spring Health in Portland are trained to know when to refer you to a specialist for further evaluation and treatment.  To bring you the best care we practice integrative care. If imaging is necessary, we will send you for the necessary imaging whether that be an x-ray, a bone scan, MRI, CT, or ultrasound.  We also work closely with the medical community to provide you with optimal care by meeting your needs and sharing options, so that you can make an informed choice and play a vital role in your healthcare decision-making.

What can I expect to pay?

Heart Spring Health accepts most insurance plans, and we offer several payment options for uninsured patients.  Please call our office for more details if you will need to pay cash for your visit.

Do Heart Spring Health practitioners do phone or long distance consults?

Yes, for patients who do not live in Portland, Oregon phone or skype consults can be arranged for patients seeking homeopathic, Chinese herbal, and some naturopathic services.  Not all services or conditions are appropriate for distance treatment and in these cases you will be referred so you can be taken care of adequately. These visits are arranged much like a regular visit and follow the guidelines listed above.  In most cases your first office visit should be done in office, please inquire if you need to make special arrangements.  Please allow and schedule an extra 20-30 minutes before your initial Skype visit.

Existing patients may call and speak to our clinic assistants about questions or concerns regarding an existing treatment plan or your last visit.  You will need to call reception to schedule any phone call.

Providers are happy to answer questions regarding a new problem, future treatment, or questions needing extensive time for an additional charge.  The charge ranges from $25-140 based on the complexity of your situation and the time spent with you on the phone.

Some situations require an office visit to be addressed appropriately, to serve your needs with the highest quality care you will be asked to make an appointment in these cases. Most insurance companies do not cover phone consults or visits.  At your request we will courtesy bill your insurance to see if this service is covered by your insurance.

Does anyone make house calls in Portland, Oregon?

Yes, some providers make house calls to treat existing patients who require home care or no longer have the resources to see them in the clinic. However, they can’t legally provide patients with transportation. If a doctor comes to your home for a house call and then refers you for treatment to the emergency room or any other health care facility, you must make arrangements for transportation and/or be held financially responsible for your transportation.

Most insurance companies do not reimburse for home visits; if you are hoping insurance will cover your visit please be sure to inquire prior to service.

A fee is added to all house calls to compensate for resources used in coming to your home.  Payment is due at time of service.