Gone are the days when medical tests required you to be poked and prodded in an antiseptic environment. Welcome to the age of self-service testing, a far cry from your generic Everlywell kits. I offer access to specialty labs that are the crème de la crème in the functional medicine world. Although insurance won’t cover these, they allow you to walk into our sessions armed with up-to-date lab results, chart your own treatment progress, or simply satisfy a medical curiosity.
Many tests are of the DIY variety, involving saliva, stool, urine, or blood spots—perfect for homebodies and needle-phobes alike. But don’t worry, if you’re a traditionalist who prefers a full-blood draw (or for labs where I trust whole blood more than blood spot), I’ve got you covered with a top-notch mobile phlebotomist, Sparkle Johnson. Contact her at email@example.com to schedule a lab appointment in the LA area.
Featured Lab Vendors:
The one-stop-shop for functional medicine labs. I’ve handpicked some of my favorites in the ‘Doc Sandford’s Recommended Tests‘ section. Feel free to give me a nudge if you think I’ve overlooked a gem.
Ulta Lab Tests
Exclusive to Quest Diagnostics. My curated lab combos are available here. While pricier than Rupa for your basic bloodwork, you do have the option of visiting Quest directly, saving you the mobile phlebotomist fee. Pro-tip: Message me directly for a swanky 30% or more off those listed rates.
Conventional Lab Testing With Insurance: Best of Both Worlds
Navigating healthcare can feel like traversing a maze, but that’s where I come in. Whether you’re still dipping your toes into naturopathic waters or are a seasoned veteran, I’ve got your back on lab testing. For regular labs, I offer both insurance-covered tests and pre-pay options via Quest and Labcorp—the same labs your conventional doctors use. The convenience here is two-fold:
Insurance Coverage: If you’re an insurance aficionado and have a killer plan, rest easy. I can order tests that are fully compatible with your insurance plan.
Pre-Pay Peace of Mind: Now, here’s where it gets interesting. Through my tough-as-nails negotiations, I’ve secured jaw-dropping pre-pay rates. Opt for this and you’ll know your financial commitment upfront. No surprises, no sticker shock.
Behind the Curtain of Insurance Billing: Protecting Your Wallet
I get it, healthcare billing feels like a tangled web of numbers and jargon. When you see an outrageous figure on your Explanation of Benefits (EOB), your initial reaction might be to panic. But let’s demystify this.
Here’s how it usually works: Quest (or Labcorp) sends an astronomical invoice to your insurer, which could be 10-20 times higher than what they expect to get paid. The insurer, in turn, haggles with the lab to nail down the specifics—coverage, costs, diagnosis codes, and more. Now factor in your deductible, copay, and other financial intricacies.
The Safety Net: If you find yourself slapped with a lab bill that rivals a down payment on a car (let’s say, over $300), reach out to me immediately. This often indicates a snag in the labyrinthine dealings between the lab and your insurance. I’ve got the experience and the savvy to hopefully reign the bill into something nice and reasonable. I can make no guarantees, as the system is so complicated with so many players, but in the majority of cases things aren’t that hard to resolve.
By offering both insurance and pre-pay options, along with my expertise in resolving billing snafus, I aim to make your healthcare journey as seamless and stress-free as possible.
Note that insurance labs, these negotiated prices and billing assistance are only available for established patients.