Frequently Asked Questions
and Patient Information

You will find answers to our most frequently asked questions here.

Our office is quite different from other doctor offices!  We have returned to the old-fashioned way of providing superlative health care in a home-based office setting with limited staffing and reduced administrative costs so that we can keep our fees as low as possible. 

This FAQ page will help you to understand our stream-lined office policies and procedures, which allow us to keep your costs as low as possible while still providing exceptional care!


What is your treatment approach?

Dr. Richey uses an integrative medicine approach which combines the best of functional medicine, naturopathic medicine, and traditional medicine. She believes in treating the root cause of disease rather than just treating symptoms.  

Also, she follows the ILADS Evidence-Based Guidelines for the Management of Lyme Disease, the Bredesen Protocol, and the Shoemaker Protocol.


What conditions do you treat?

Dr. Richey specializes in the treatment of Lyme disease and related conditions that often arise as a result of chronic Lyme disease:

  • associated tick borne infections (such as Bartonella, Babesia, etc)
  • reactivated infections (such as Epstein Barr, etc)
  • zoonoses
  • other chronic infections
  • biotoxin illness
  • mold illness
  • autoimmune diseases
  • autoimmune encephalitis (PANS, PANDAS)
  • cognitive impairment and dementia
  • chronic fatigue syndrome
  • fibromyalgia
  • and more

Do you accept insurance?

Dr. Richey does not accept any third party payments from any sources including but not limited to private insurance, Medicare, Medicaid, Workers' Compensation, injury lawsuits, etc. You are responsible for all interactions with your third party payors.

However, she will provide you with a receipt for your in-person appointment that you can turn into your insurance company for reimbursement if you ask for one at the time of your visit. Receipts will not be mailed or faxed. Most insurance companies (except Medicaid and Medicare) do reimburse your appointment fee on an out-of-network basis.  

Also, most insurance companies (except Medicaid) accept laboratory testing and prescriptions written by Dr. Richey.   However, Medicare may not pay for all ordered labs.


What laboratory tests do you order?

Dr. Richey uses the Igenex Lyme Western Blot or the Immunoblot test, many “regular” tests, many co-infection tests, and biotoxin labs if needed.  Insurance companies (except Medicaid) usually cover everything except the Igenex test (but Medicare does cover the Igenex test). You would be responsible for any co-pays and deductibles. She can order other specialty tests if requested and if needed, but these tests are rarely covered by insurance companies.

Blood work is not drawn at this office. Instead, we highly recommend that you visit LabCorp for your laboratory testing because they perform testing well and because they fax final results to us quickly without excess pages.  

You can get your labs drawn at another facility rather than LabCorp.  However, these other facilities often fax hundreds of copies to us with much duplication and extraneous information that takes significant time to sort out.  So, if you use another facility,  you will need to arrange for them to mail (not fax) results to us or you will need to pick them up yourself and bring them to your appointment.  If the other facility faxes your labs to us, there will be an adminstrative fee of 20 cents per copy and the labs will be sorted out during your next appointment.


How do I get my laboratory results?

Lab results will be thoroughly discussed with you at your next appointment and copies of the results will be given to you at that time for no charge. You will be contacted immediately for emergency lab values.

Monthly labs are needed for chronic antibiotic usage. You will receive an email letting you know if your monthly labs are normal or if further action is needed.

Also, you can get your results yourself through the LabCorp patient portal or patient portal from the laboratory that you used.  These results will be interpreted for you and discussed with you at your next appointment. 


I have heard that Lyme tests are often negative even when a person has history and symptoms of Lyme disease. What do you do in this case?

Laboratory testing is important and is used, but most of these chronic infections are difficult to detect. Thus, clinical diagnosis is usually based on history and symptoms and response to treatment. Laboratory testing only confirms exposure to the Borrelia bacteria when the testing is positive.  So, you can still be treated for Lyme disease even if your Lyme tests are negative per CDC standards.


Do you prescribe oral antibiotics or IV antibiotics or natural antimicrobials?

At this time, Dr. Richey only prescribes oral antibiotics rather than IV antibiotics because her patients improve with this treatment approach. So far, she has not needed to use IV antibiotics for Lyme patients.  Also, she uses herbal products for treating a multitude of infections naturally if you prefer. Both approaches are highly effective.


Do you recommend natural products, such as herbs, supplements, probiotics, and antioxidants?

Most ILADS doctors and Bredesen physicians are discovering that chronic infections cannot be successfully treated with antibiotics alone.  Instead, patients need natural products to help with healing your body, detoxing toxins, and modulating the immune system. In addition, natural products help to minimize herx reactions. Dr. Richey will recommend natural products for you and help you manage these products, but it is your decision whether to use them or not. She does not assist you with products that you use on your own or that you obtained from other health practitioners.

If you would like to use natural products, you can purchase some products with cash or check, and other products with credit card. So, please bring all forms of payment with you to your appointments. Again, it is up to you whether you want to use natural products or not.


Do you address other problems connected with chronic infections?

Yes, other problems need to be addressed with the infection for maximal improvement. For example, nutrient deficiencies must be corrected, hormonal levels may need to be optimized, and diet must be improved. Furthermore, biotoxin illness often complicates chronic medical conditions and must be addressed for maximal improvement. Cavitations can also block treatment.


How do you treat biotoxin illness?

Dr. Richey has studied the treatment protocol of biotoxin illness (including mold and Lyme neurotoxins) from Dr. Shoemaker who has pioneered this area since about 1997. His methods are backed by extensive research. You can read more about his research at Surviving Mold.


How do you treat Alzheimer's Disease and other conditions of cognitive decline?

Dr. Richey is a certified practitioner for the Bredesen Protocol for the treatment of Alzheimer's Disease and other neurodegenerative diseases, such as Parkinson's Disease.  The treatment for Alzheimer's Disease involves a multi-factorial approach addressing inflammation, chronic infections, insulin resistance, lack of nutrition and hormones, and biotoxin illness (mold). 

Do you offer primary care appointments?

No. Dr. Richey prefers to treat patients with chronic infections (such as Lyme disease) accompanied biotoxin illness (including mold) and neurodegenerative diseases (such as Alzheimer's Disease) and related conditions.

You should maintain your relationship with your primary care physician for primary care needs including any controlled medications (such as narcotics and anxiety medications), hospitalizations, medical emergencies, preventive care, and general medical care.


Can you tell me more about office appointments?

New appointments are usually at 10 am and follow-up appointments are usually at 10 am or 11 am.   Appointments may added at other times as needed. Appointments will be scheduled on selected weekdays. No appointments are scheduled on weekends.

New appointments are about 1 3/4 hours, and follow-up appointments are about 45 minutes. We see patients initially, at one month, then two months later, and then at least every 2-3 months while on active treatment in order to monitor you closely.  If your health is considerably compromised, then monthly follow-up appointments are recommended.

Appointments are held in the comfort of our home-based office. We are able to keep appointment fees low because our office is our home.  We ask for your consideration of our home during your office visit.  We do offer our guest bathroom to our patients during appointments.  Also, our home does have dogs (who will be caged), cats (who wander through the office), and a bunny (who lives upstairs).  These animals provide pet therapy for patients. A HEPA filter is available for those who may experience allergies.   If you are severely allergic to animals, it is best if you do not schedule an appointment.

A reminder email will be sent to you prior to your appointment.  Please confirm your appointment by replying to the reminder email.  Your appointment will most likely be cancelled if you do not confirm your appointment in this manner.


What are your appointment fees?

As noted above, we strive to keep our appointment fees as low as possible by avoiding bounced checks and by avoiding credit card fees and equipment.  We believe that we have the lowest fees (but exceptional quality!) in the country among ILADS and Bredesen physicians who do not accept insurance.  

We offer two convenient methods of payment for services:

  1. Preferably, PAYPAL (see next section below) the day prior to your appointment.
  2. CASH (not checks, not cards) at the beginning of your appointment.

Most New Visits (1 3/4 hours): $475

Some New Visits for Acute Lyme Disease (sick for very short time) ONLY (45 minutes): $275. 

Follow-up Visits (45 minutes): $225

Visits that extend over the allotted time are prorated at $225/hour.


What is PayPal? How do I sign up for PayPal?

PayPal is a super easy way to use funds from your checking account, savings account and/or credit cards for online payments! 

To quickly sign up, just visit the PayPal website, then click the white Sign Up button in the upper right corner, and follow the instructions. Then, you can use funds from your checking account, savings account, and/or credit cards to us using our email address which is thehealthypath@gmail.com .

Keep in mind that - at this time - you do not have to use PayPal at The Healthy Path (we also have a cash option), but it is really convenient especially when you do not have time to stop at the bank.

PayPal has lots of other benefits.  So, while you are there, check out what else you can do through PayPal.


Do you work with other doctors, and, if so, how?

Absolutely!  And the best way for practitioners to respect each other and to work with each other is for each doctor to manage certain aspects of patient care rather than for everyone to manage everything with overlap and confusion.  The expression "Too many cooks spoil the soup" is quite appropriate in medicine as it is in the kitchen. 

For example, if you choose Dr. Richey to manage your chronic infections, then it is best if your primary care physician, chiropractor, or nutritionalist do not try to do so as well; however, it is great if they would manage other conditions related to their specialty, such as thyroid management, mechanical adjustments, and dietary advice, respectively. And if you choose Dr. Richey to manage your Alzheimer's Disease with the Bredesen protocol, then it also works well for your neurologist to manage your dementia with traditional methods.  In these cases, each practitioner works within their expertise without overlap and confusion for the patient. 

Also, you are given copies of lab results as well as a treatment plan at your appointments; you can share this information with other doctors as you feel necessary.  If you prefer, Dr. Richey can relay this information to your practitioners for an associated administrative fee.


What should I bring to my appointment?

Please bring the following items to your first appointment:

  • new patient forms
  • a list of previous diagnoses
  • a list of previous surgeries
  • current medications (bring bottles)
  • current supplements (bring bottles)
  • and copies of pertinent lab and test reports that we can put directly into your chart arranged from newest to oldest without staples.

Please do not bring office notes. Also, we will not make copies for you because it is too time-consuming, and we would rather spend time with patient care.

You are welcome to bring a friend or a family member to help you remember the details of your appointment. Please do not bring more than 1-2 guests, and please make sure that any guests have thoroughly read these FAQs, too.

The office is maintained at a cool temperature so please wear layers or bring a sweater/jacket to be more comfortable. For the comfort of other patients and staff, you will be asked to remove shoes in order to avoid tracking in mold and allergens and to minimize office cleaning. You may wear slippers if you prefer.


What should I NOT bring with me to my appointment?

For the comfort of us and other patients, please do not wear any type of perfumes, colognes, fragrances, scented lotions, scented deodorants, scented hair spray, scented hand cream, scented hair gel, etc. Seriously, we will not be able to see you if you and/or your friend/family bring scents with you.  Keep in mind that these chemicals can be transferred to coats, sweaters, jackets, scarves, purses, etc.  Please do not wear anything scented for our health and for your health. 

Also, we would appreciate it if you and your guest(s) refrain from distractions, such as chewing gum, eating, texting, answering phone calls, playing electronic games, reading books, clicking pens, excessively rattling papers, etc during your appointment so that we can concentrate on you better.

In addition, we are not set up to accommodate children in our practice at this time. Please do not bring your children to your appointment. This policy is for your benefit so that we can spend more time focused on you. 


Where can I find directions to your office?

You can find directions to our home-based office by clicking on the directions button on the left side of this screen.


What local hotel do you recommend?

If you need to arrive the day prior to your appointment, you may want to stay at the Countryside Inn & Suites which is the only local hotel in the immediate vicinity. They are located at 100 Leininger Street, Mount Orab, Ohio 45154 about 2 miles from the office at the intersection of SR 32 and SR 68. They offer breakfast, a pool, and a clean facility; their rates are very reasonable. You can make an appointment by calling 937-444-6666.


What happens if I am late to my appointment?

We strive to run on time; therefore, your appointment will start promptly at your scheduled time. If you are late, we will not be able to cover as much in your allotted time. If you are consistently really late, we may not schedule future appointments.


What is your cancellation policy?

This topic is so important the we have created a separate page for our cancellation policy.  Please let us know if you have any questions.


Do you offer telephone appointments?

You will obtain the best service with office visits. However, you may elect for telephone consultations for new issues between routine visits, such as new symptoms, herxing problems, side effects, medication changes, treatment changes, etc. Telephone appointments are not in lieu of regular appointments or cancelled appointments.

Patients must be established in the practice before telephone appointments will be considered; we do not offer long distance consultations for patients who have never been seen in person previously.

Telephone appointments are $225 up to 30 minutes and then prorated $225 per hour thereafter.  After the phone call, Dr. Richey completes your paperwork for the next 15-30 minutes. 

You are responsible for sending the symptom list, medication/supplement lists, and payment to arrive by the day prior your telephone appointment. And you are responsible for calling the office at your appointed time.

What do I do for medical emergencies?

If you have a medical emergency, please go straight to the emergency room. Your primary care physician should respond to all emergencies. If your situation is not resolved, you may call for further advice. Emergency phone calls are billed at $225 up to 30 minutes and then prorated at $225 per hour thereafter.


How do I get my prescriptions refilled?

Prescriptions are only refilled at your office visit.  Automated refill requests sent from your pharmacy will be ignored. Please check that you have received all prescriptions at the time of service in order to avoid an administrative fee. Treatment plans are not changed between visits unless you schedule an appointment - in person or telephone. 


How do you handle communication between office appointments?

Routine communication is done via email for efficiency and documentation.  All patients must have a personal email address that they check frequently.  Reminder emails are sent prior to appointments; please confirm your appointment by replying to those emails. 

You are welcome to ask a few urgent questions about current treatment via occasional emails for no charge. However, if you have many questions, complex questions, confusing questions, or complicated medical issues, you will be asked to make a follow-up appointment or a telephone consultation instead in order for us to provide better advice.

Non-urgent questions are best answered at your next regular appointments and not with emails.  Non-urgent matters include a new treatment that you just read about or a new supplement that you just found out about or a recent book that you just heard about or a link to the newest research study or daily updates, etc.  We greatly appreciate your cooperation so that we can be available for urgent concerns for you and other patients.

You will be charged a retroactive administrative fee at a rate of $225 per hour check if more than 30 minutes is spent answering your emails per 30 day period.



What do I do if I need administrative paperwork and services?

Our philosophy is to keep appointment fees as low as possible. We believe that it is much more fair to keep rates low for everyone, and only charge extra for those who need extra services.

Most patients do not need any additional services, but some patients want various forms or other work.  Dr. Richey may perform administrative work and services for an additional charge on a case-by-case basis. 

For example, she does not do insurance pre-certifications because they are quite time consuming for her, costly for you, and are rarely approved.  Also, she does not complete disability forms or letters; please see your PCP for assistance with disability paperwork. 

  • Usually, simple tasks can be performed for free during appointments.
  • Between appointments, fees are usually $50 or $225 per hour for longer documents and tasks.
  • If you use a laboratory or hospital other than LabCorp for your labwork and if that laboratory or hospital faxes an exuberance of redundant and pending results, the administrative fee is $100.   If you want to use a different facility, they will need to mail results to us.
  • The administrative fee for data entry for patients signed up for the RECODE Report is $100 per report.
  • The requested administrative work will be performed after receipt of payment.

Please contact Dr. Richey for her fee schedule for legal work.


Can I get copies of my medical records?

You will be given copies of labs at your next office visit free of charge. You will be charged for all other medical records or additional copies of labs according to current allowable Ohio rates.


Do you treat adults, teens and children?

Dr. Richey has been trained in Family Practice and in the medical care of the entire family. Therefore, she can treat all ages. However, at this time, she only treats adults and young adults who are at least 12 years old, who are over 100 pounds, and who are able to swallow capsules/tablets. Our office is not set-up to accommodate young children. 


Do you provide family discounts?

No, we do not provide family discounts because our rates are already incredibly low.


Do you treat pregnant women with Lyme disease?

Dr. Richey believes that it is best if a woman does not become pregnant until her Lyme disease is in full remission. She will treat pregnant women who are already existing patients according to ILADS recommendations, which involve antibiotics for which there is a successful track record. Natural products are not used for killing infection since no manufacture will declare their products safe in pregnancy. However, some supplements that are deemed safe for pregnancy are recommended.

The father of the baby will need to be present for at least the first appointment in order to understand risks and benefits of treatment and to sign the consent form to treat the baby with the pregnant woman. Dr. Richey will not treat the baby after delivery.


I want to make an appointment. What do I do next?

Congratulations on wanting to improve your health!

Please fill out the Appointment Request Form
after you have read all of these Frequently Asked Questions. The adult patient must make his/her own appointment using his/her own email address unless physically, emotionally, or mentally impaired.  Then, Dr. Richey will email you back with appointment options. 


We look forward to helping you travel the healthy path to wellness!



Let food

be thy medicine, 

and medicine 

be thy food.  

~Hippocrates

DANDELION

Herb

Your word

is a lamp

to my feet

and a light

to my path.

~Psalm 119:105

ECHINACEA

Herb

The secret of health

for both mind and body

is not to mourn for the past,

worry about the future,

or anticipate troubles,

but to live in the present moment wisely and earnestly.

~Buddha (paraphrased)

LAVENDER

Herb