With constant changes to policies and procedures regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, we want to take a moment to keep you up-to-date with COVID-19 information and how we are working to keep you safe.
Continue to keep yourself safe:
The State of Emergency COVID-19 Executive Order is set to renew on October 13th, 2022. We are tracking any updates and changes to the virtual visit guidelines. If you have any questions or concerns regarding virtual visit coverage, please contact your insurance company.
COVID by County:
Duval, Clay, and St. John’s counties are within the high alert level for COVID-19. The alert level is determined by a number of factors which affect the precautions that need to be taken. Keep up with COVID-19 information by county here: CDC- COVID by County
Guidelines and Policies:
Our office follows CDC and Baptist guidelines and policies. You can find more information regarding these guidelines here:
Baptist Jax- COVID Updates
COVID-19 vaccines are available at most pharmacies in the area. If you need help finding a location to get vaccinated, you can find a search feature here:
CDC- Vaccine Information
As always, stay safe!
The Kidney Korner is the newest installment of our blog, The Bean: Kidney Empowerment. We will be defining, explaining, and discussing various topics related to the kidneys, their function, related issues, and conditions that may contribute to or result in kidney damage. We will also be providing helpful resources and infographics related to the topic. Check back monthly for new Kidney Korner posts!
Definition: Kidneys are fist-sized, bean-shaped organs that are located just below the ribcage in the back. Their main function is to filter the blood, remove waste from the body, and produce urine to remove the waste and excess water. Kidneys have approximately one million functioning, filtering units called nephrons. Nephrons contain small blood vessels called glomerulus that connect to tubules to filter the blood and fluids.
What do kidneys do?
How Dr. Munjal Helps:
Dr. Munjal comes from a teaching background and believes that a patient is more likely to succeed when they are knowledgeable about their diagnosis and conditions. He has a whiteboard in every room to be able to draw out and explain the importance, function, interaction, and relationships of various components regarding kidney diseases and hypertension. Based on the patient’s individual needs and case, he will prescribe medications, make lifestyle change suggestions, and order lab tests and imaging as necessary. Follow-up appointments will be scheduled to discuss results and any other changes needed. Dr. Munjal’s office staff is also cross-trained with a wide knowledge base to assist patients with questions and concerns.
National Kidney Foundation
National Institutes of Health
If you have any questions about how your kidneys function, call our office to set up a consultation with Dr. Munjal to empower yourself through education.
Our Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) program allows our patients’ blood pressure and weight readings to be monitored remotely by their care team. Patients are able to remain in the comfort of their own home and receive personalized and comprehensive care. By identifying trends and out-of-range readings, we are able to alter a patient’s care plan with more precision in a timely manner to help improve overall health and wellbeing without frequent office visits.
Dr. Munjal seized the opportunity to incorporate this program into his practice when it became available to Medicare patients. Dr. Munjal’s passion for this type of program has only grown since the implementation of this program. “For twenty years, I have said that if I ran an insurance company, I would give all patients a blood pressure monitor and scale as they are two of the most effective tools to take care of one’s health. I have always asked patients to log all readings to review at appointments rather than relying on the one reading taken in-office. This reading may be wrong or an outlier (which happens more often than not) which can greatly affect decision making. If we can see a trend of regular readings in a consistent environment, then we are making better decisions for the patient. These devices are capable of transmitting readings in real time so patients no longer have to maintain a log themselves. Because of this, the care team and I are able to monitor and make decisions as we go along, thus fine-tuning the care plan.”
Our office provides all of the necessities to get started. This includes your Bluetooth or 4G enabled devices and a personalized training session to become familiar with the devices and program. This program is covered by Medicare and most secondary insurances. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact your insurance provider. We have seen a wide range of benefits from this program for our patients since we began in early 2021. Our care team has been able to identify trends and intervene faster by altering care plans when we have noticed a change in health status. This has reduced potential hospitalizations, prolonged in-office follow-up appointments, and helped to improve care plans for other providers within the patient’s care team. One of our RPM patients, Mack Gooding, had this to say about his experience with the program: “It is extremely comforting, as a senior citizen who lives alone with multiple health issues, to know that my progress and health status are being monitored by healthcare professionals on a regular basis."
You can learn more about this program by calling into our office, asking at your next appointment, or from our website here.
The CDC defines the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) as “a federal law that requires the creation of national standards to protect sensitive health information from being disclosed without the patient’s consent or knowledge,” (2022). The Privacy Rule addresses protected health information (PHI), uses, and disclosures. An explicit, written authorization is required from the patient to disclose any information for routine clinic practices and procedures as well as any marketing or research. Jacksonville Nephrology takes your rights to privacy very seriously. We require annual reviews of HIPAA compliant contacts and all contact information as well as screening all callers and records requests for proper authorization to release information.
What is considered PHI?
Empower yourself with more information about HIPAA and the Privacy Rule at the following sites:
HIPAA Privacy Rule- hhs.gov
HIPAA Privacy Rule- AAFP.org
Be proactive in maintaining your privacy and allowing others to speak to our office by filling out our HIPAA forms and finding our privacy policies on our website here.
About The Bean
The Bean is a blog on a mission to share valuable information in the world of Nephrology. We believe in empowering through education and The Bean is a great place to find resources and information on topics related to high blood pressure, kidney disease, dialysis and topics that enhance the kidney minded lifestyle. Enjoy and be sure to subscribe!