Divorced/Separated Parents


As your child’s primary care provider, we focus on the medical, psychological, and physiological health of our patients. Legal or personal issues involving divorce, separation, or custody agreements should remain between the parents. Our practice, providers, and staff are not parties to your legal or personal issues. We ask that you read our policy carefully and thoroughly. 
 
1.  It is the responsibility of the parent/step-parent/individual presenting the patient for care to make any payments, such as copays and outstanding balances, at the time of the visit, regardless of which parent is responsible for medical expenses.  We will not bill or split-bill the other parent; you or your attorney can seek reimbursement from the other parent if necessary. If an account becomes delinquent and/or goes to collections, we will pursue both parents for payment and the family will be dismissed from the practice. 

2.  Physicians, management, clinical and office support staff will not become involved in decision-making disagreements between the parents or amongst the parties who have legal decision-making authority for a minor. Decisions or collaboration between parents regarding appointments, vaccinating, and other care and treatment should be considered and addressed prior to scheduled appointments. 

3.  Either parent or legal guardian may schedule an appointment for their child, be present for the visit, and/or obtain a copy of the visit summary upon request. We strongly encourage BOTH parents to attend appointments. If, after speaking to the parent who brought the child for the visit, you still have questions regarding your child’s care, we ask that you please call and leave a message or send a message via your child’s portal account. Please be advised, however, that as your child’s healthcare provider, we will not be used as a vehicle of communication between parents; therefore, we need you to communicate with each other regarding your child(ren). 

4.  Changes to the patient’s demographic information must be agreed upon by both parents; we will confirm agreement with both parents prior to changing any of the patient’s demographic information. 

5.  It is expected that both parents will communicate with each other about office visit appointments and all other pertinent information relative to the patient. It is not the responsibility of the physician or other members of the staff to inform one parent when the other parent schedules/reschedules/cancels an appointment.
 
For example: 
  • We will not call the other parent to inform them that an appointment has been made for the patient. 
  • We will not call the other parent for consent regarding scheduled appointments. 
  • We will not routinely call or send information regarding an appointment to the parent not in attendance. This is the responsibility of the parent accompanying the child to the appointment. 
6.  Parents are expected to share the login and password for their child’s patient portal account. Access to the portal will be denied/removed if parents fail to cooperate or if the portal account is used inappropriately. 

7.  Both parents have equal rights to the child’s medical information. This parental right is restricted to access to the child’s medical information and does not include access to the address, telephone number, or any other information regarding the other parent. Unless there is a court order in the child’s record that restricts a parent’s rights, we will not limit the other parent’s involvement in your child’s care.  We must be provided with the most up-to-date court order, which will be attached to the patient’s record. 

8.  If there is not a court order on file with our practice, or if the court order does not limit parental rights regarding health care, either parent may execute a “Consent to Treat” form that authorizes any named individual(s) (for example, grandparent(s), nanny, step-parent, or other) to bring the patient to our practice for care, be present during the visit, and consent to treatment during that visit. We will not be involved in any disputes regarding named individuals on the Consent to Treat form, and we will not comply with requests to eliminate names on the other parent’s form, unless evidenced in a court order. These requests should be referred to your attorney. 

9.  We will not write letters for a parent testifying to the fitness or childcare ability of the other parent. 

10.  Should one of our physicians be requested to appear in court for any reason, our standard rate is $500 per hour with a four-hour minimum, payable in advance. This fee supports the physician having to cancel patient appointments for at least a half-day, preparation including reviewing the patient’s medical record, travel time, and court time. A deposition taken in our office will require a minimum of one and a half hours, paid in advance at the hourly rate. 

11.  Should issues between parents become disruptive to our practice or impede the care of our patient, we reserve the right to discharge your family from our practice. 
 
The best scenario is for both parents and any step-parent(s) involved to communicate openly with one another and actively participate in the health care and treatment of the child. Separation and divorce are extremely hard on children and your cooperation with each other is very important to your child’s mental, emotional, and physical health. 
 
2024/Jan
 
Enola Office • 1824 Good Hope Road, Suite 201 (717) 791-2680
Camp Hill Office • 25 West Shore Drive (717) 791-2680