Frequently Asked Questions
What are the practice hours?
Children's Orthopaedics of Atlanta treats patients from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Earlier morning hours (starting at 7:00 a.m.) are available with certain providers upon request.
What if I have a question for my child’s doctor after the appointment?
We encourage you to call 404-255-1933 with concerns about your child's health. Calls made during office hours will be handled by a member of our nursing staff. The nurse may be able to answer your question immediately or may consult with a physician and return your call at the earliest possible opportunity. If you need to speak directly to your child's doctor, the nurse will arrange for your call to be returned as soon as possible.
Should a non-emergent but urgent problem arise after hours, one of our physicians is always on call. When you dial 404-255-1933, you will reach an answering service operator who will instruct the physician to return your call. Please tell the operator your name, your child's name, the nature of the problem, and your telephone number.
If a true emergency arises, call 911 directly.
I need one of my child’s prescriptions refilled. Who should I call?
We accept requests for prescription renewals during normal office hours only. Please call for renewals at least two days before your child runs out of medication. Please keep in mind that due to federal laws, we are no longer able to refill pain medications - prescriptions must be picked up at the office.
Why is my child seeing a Physician Assistant instead of physician?
At Children’s Orthopaedics of Atlanta (COA), our Physician Assistants assist our surgeons in patient care. They are an invaluable asset in providing quality care for your children. All COA PA's specialize in the treatment of non-operative care, mostly orthopaedic fractures and injuries. Occasionally a PA might see your child after surgery as well. They work side-by-side with their supervising surgeon on a weekly basis both for education and for quality of care. Our practice runs very efficiently comparatively with other specialty practices. Part of this is due to the wonderful help from our Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners. If your child has a less complicated case, you may see a P.A. or N.P. so that we can get your child in and out as soon as possible and get them back to their normal schedule.
I need a copy of my child’s medical record. How can I get one?
COA uses a company known as Medicopy to assist with medical records. You will need to sign an authorization to release personal health information. Click here for more information.
I don’t understand my child’s fracture and/or surgery bill. Could you please explain?
Physician's and other medical providers are required to bill according to insurance regulations which are established and monitored by the Insurance Commission and the government. This is often confusing to patients and understanding the guidelines that are to be followed will assist you in understanding the charges you have for services provided.
CPT Codes: Physicians bill using CPT codes. These are numbers which have been assigned to describe different types of treatment that patients receive. Physicians are Required to bill according to the CPT guidelines which have been established. These codes are divided into different categories:
- Evaluation & Management which covers routine office visits
- Surgical Codes which include surgery, fracture care and injections
- Radiological Codes which include charges for X-rays, MRI's, CT Scans
- Laboratory Codes which cover blood work ordered by your physician
- Drug Codes - Durable Medical Equipment which cover the medications you are provided and things such as braces, splints, crutches, ace bandages, etc.
The fracture or surgery for which you have been treated falls under the surgical codes. This does not necessarily mean that surgery was performed but that the insurance guidelines require the physician to bill for this service as "global days." Global days are days that have been assigned to a particular type of treatment where the physician must see the patient for the same injury without charging the patient additional charges for his/her services (Professional fees) as long as the treatment is related to the original injury and no complications have occurred. The number of global days for follow up varies by the type of surgery or fracture but is normally 90 days. Charges for other services are still billed during the global period. These may include:
- Cast changes - slings - splints - braces
- Other supplies
- New injuries, repeat procedures due to complications
- Treatment not related to the original fracture or surgery
Each CPT code is assigned a charge amount. These are based on the medical expertise required and the average of the cost for treating the particular injury or service. In some instances a fracture or surgery patient may only require minimum treatment and does well, however another patient with the same injury may require extensive treatment. Since we must bill by CPT codes and we cannot vary the charge amounts, an average is used for all CPT codes. These amounts are reviewed on a yearly basis and compared to those of other providers. Our rates are based on the average cost to provide the service and average charges of other orthopaedic practices.
When you have a Fracture or Surgery - you will be billed for the following:
- The initial office or emergency room visit (E&M Code) This charge covers the physician taking your medical history and reviewing information provided by you and other physicians. This is normally done before he comes into the room to begin treatment
- Fracture Charge (Surgical Procedure) This charge covers the physician's fee for treating the fracture. The physician may or may not have to align the fracture and may or may not have to take you to surgery. Remember each CPT code covers the type and extent of treatment being performed and the physician's charges for follow up treatment for the fracture during the global period, 30-60-90 days, as long as the treatment is for continued care of the original injury
- X-rays if additional X-rays are taken in the office we will bill for the X-rays taken. If you bring X-rays from another facility the physician will review these and no charge will be made
- Supplies Charges for things such as braces, slings, ace bandages, suture trays and other items are billed separately. Please note charges for cast changes due to patient request are not covered by your insurance. Some of the equipment you may receive is provided and billed through a third party, Orthoscript, which is not affiliated with COA
We hope this will answer any questions you may have. However, if you have any other questions, please call our office and we will be glad to assist you. (404) 255-1933