Frequently Asked Questions

What if I miss an appointment?

AOGA makes every effort to communicate appointment reminders via our automated call system.  However, this only works if you keep your phone number current, which may be done on the patient portal.  We know that life gets in the way of schedules and if you should inadvertently miss an appointment, please call and reschedule as soon as possible.  We do have a missed appointment policy, and should you miss more than oneappointment, we will charge a $30 missed appointment fee for each missed appointment.  This fee must be paid prior to rescheduling. Excessive missed appointments may result in the dismissal from the practice at the provider’s discretion. Should a conflict arise and your appointment needs to be rescheduled, please call the office as soon as possible.

Do I have on-line access to my records and services?

After your first visit, we encourage you to set up your secure patient access via the on-line portal. The portal link is located on the home page of the AOGA website www.Aikenobgyn.com. This link allows you to view test results, request an appointment, renew prescriptions and communicate with AOGA.

Who has access to my records?

Your medical records are confidential and are processed in accordance with South Carolina law. We will release the records only with your written authorization. We will not discuss your medical care with anyone, including your spouse or other family members, without your specific written permission to do so.

What if I have an emergency after hours?

An AOGA doctor is always on call to handle emergencies during the week. Every fifth weekend Dr. Judith Hoover shares call with AOGA.

To reach the physician on call, simply call the office phone number 803-649-7535 and the answering service will contact the on-call physician. However, you must provide a working call-back phone number. All privacy director and anonymous caller rejection filters must be turned off in order to receive a call-back from the physician on call.

May I renew my prescription over the phone?

If you are calling to have a prescription refilled, we ask that you call during office hours so that we will have your chart available to make certain that a refill is the best course of treatment. Please have the phone number for your pharmacy available. We encourage you to use our patient portal on the website to request prescription renewals.  These on-line requests are available only during business hours.  Please be sure that your phone number on the portal is correct so that you can be called should there be any questions.

Federal regulations do not allow us to prescribe certain controlled substances by phone, nor can they be filled via the portal.

What is your financial policy?

We strive to maintain fees for service at a reasonable level commensurate with the level of care provided and the high level of training by the physicians in this group practice. Please understand, however, that some insurance plans set their reimbursements at arbitrary levels that bear no relationship to the cost of rendering medical care. Our primary concern is your health, and that will be the driving force for treatment recommendations.

There are standardized charges for various procedures, and these fees are listed in the office and are available at all times during normal business hours. Questions regarding fees should be directed to the business manager.

In addition to AOGA’s fee, any patient using the hospital, lab, or other specialties such as anesthesia will receive separate invoices from those providers.

Charges for office visits are expected to be paid at the time of the visit. Payment may be by Cash, Check, Money Order, Visa, MasterCard or Discover. If AOGA participates with your insurance provider, we will collect the co-pay and any deductible at the time of your visit.  Prior to any procedures beyond an office visit, we will check to see if and how much will be covered by your policy.  Amounts not covered by your policy are due at the time of the procedure.  For patients with high deductibles, we do work out payment arrangements. Regardless of your insurance situation, should you find yourself unable to pay at the time of service, please call the business manager to discuss payment arrangements.

What if my insurance company does not participate with AOGA?

If you are enrolled in a plan in which we do not participate, AOGA will file a courtesy clam on your behalf. However, the charges for your office visit are due at the time of the visit. Any reimbursement will be sent directly to you by your insurance company.

What if I do not have any insurance?

As with all patients, payment is due at the time of the visit.  We do apply self-pay discounts to uninsured patients and will discuss fees for follow-up appointments at the time they are scheduled.

What insurance do you accept?

AOGA participates with the majority of health care plans in this area. The major companies are BCBS PPO, UHC, Cigna, Aetna, Medicaid, Blue Choice Medicaid, First Choice/Select Health, Absolute Total Care, and Wellcare.  We also participate in a number of other health care plans, and your insurance company should give you a preferred provider list. If AOGA is not listed in your preferred provider list, please call our office at (803)649-7535 and inquire as to our participation.

Insurance is generally a contract between the patient and the insurance company. Regardless of the payment from the insurance company, each patient is responsible for charges rendered on their behalf.

AOGA participates in the Medicaid and HMO Medicaid programs. We accept new Medicare patients by referral only.

Whom should I contact if I have questions about my bill?

You should call AOGA and ask to speak with the business manager.  Every effort will be made to resolve your questions, but in some cases you will be instructed to call your insurance company.

Whom should I contact to check on lab results?

You will receive a letter from the lab with your pap smear results.  Additionally, our office will contact you regarding your lab results. If you do not hear from us within two weeks of the tests, please call AOGA and ask to speak with your doctor’s clinical assistant.  She will make every effort to call you back before the end of the day.  You may also access your lab results via the patient portal.

How may I speak directly with my doctor?

For non emergency questions during business hours, call the office and leave a message for your doctor.  He or she will make every effort to return your call at the earliest possible time.  Sometimes this may be after office hours or the next day.

Who will deliver my baby?

This is a group practice, and although you will choose one of our doctors to be primarily responsible for your continued care during your pregnancy, it is possible that one of the other physicians in our group may be on call at the time of your delivery if it takes place at night or on a weekend. During the course of your pregnancy, you should have ample opportunity to meet each of our obstetricians.

Do you perform abortions?

AOGA does not perform elective abortions.

Do you have ultrasound services?

Ultrasound is available in our office, aiding in diagnosis without a delay. Our sonographers are Registered Diagnostic Medical Sonographers.  We perform pelvic (gynecological) and obstetrical ultrasounds, both trans-abdominal and trans-vaginal, as well as breast ultrasounds.

May guests be present at my ultrasound?

We understand your desire to share your ultrasound experience with your loved ones.  Due to limited space in the ultrasound room, AOGA allows 2 guests to be present during the scan.

At what age will you accept patients into your practice?

AOGA sees patients as young as under 12 with a pediatrician’s referral and as old as 90 or beyond.  No matter what her age, every woman has unique health needs that are best addressed by our trained and certified OB/GYN providers.

At the age of 14, young women have the legal right to obtain care without parental consent if that care is in regards to their reproductive/sexual health. Unless the patient gives her express consent, family members will not be able to be present during the consultation and exam, nor will they be able to obtain lab/procedure results or be advised of further follow-up if necessary.  This is true regardless of who is responsible for the patient’s expenses.

May my family/friend come to my appointment with me?

Our waiting room has limited space yet we understand that many patients depend on the support of their family and/or friends when they visit a physician.  We ask that you limit your guests to no more than 2, and should you need to bring your children that you also bring an adult who will supervise them at all times.  We greatly discourage children (beyond babies in carriers) from accompanying their mother into the exam and consultation.  We wish to spend your appointment time to concentrate on your medical care.