Personalized Alcohol Treatment Help
Follow the Alcohol Recovery Medicine
Only you can decide how much you want to drink.
Though experts agree that alcohol will not be a problem if you quit entirely, there is a personalized, best solution for everyone, and Alcohol Recovery Medicine recognizes the importance of individualized care. Don't wait until the consequences of your drinking worsen, before you decide to change.
Do you know exactly how much alcohol you drink? Keeping an accurate record can help identify circumstances which lead you to drink more than you intend and can help track the effects of medications prescribed for AUD. You can track your alcohol consumption in a spreadsheet or smartphone app for Android or iPhone. (Using apps may create a risk to your privacy as they are provided by private vendors and any app has the potential to be hacked.)
Measuring your desire for drinking using a craving scale can help you see the effect of medications given for AUD, and can help guide your physician's treatment recommendations.
Making gradual steps towards a healthy life can make a difference over time. Take advantage of scientifically based dietary and lifestyle guidelines described in the Ten Good Rules.
There are many treatment paths, yet finding an alcohol addiction specialist is not always easy. A knowledgeable physician can help you decide if medical therapy is appropriate for your situation.
Learn about the many medications which have been shown to help those with AUD. If your physician prescribes naltrexone, you can learn about the targeted use of this pill (often referred to as The Sinclair Method) by watching this TEDx talk.
Enlist the help of family, friends, and skilled counselors for healing, encouragement, and continued motivation. If you drink alcohol in response to past traumatic events in your life, psychological therapy may be critical for complete recovery. Robust evidence shows that twelve step support groups provide vital help. To find the help you need, make an appointment and check our online Resource page.
Telemedicine Appointments with
Dr. John Umhau MD
If you recognize that you may have alcohol use disorder, you have taken a big step along the path to a better life. We offer a range of medical options to help you reduce your alcohol consumption and prevent devastating harm from alcohol use disorder. Treatment is provided in perhaps the most confidential manner possible, through video visits conducted through your home computer.
Alcohol use disorder can be a complicated problem, so your treatment plan will be tailored specifically for you. Together we will explore your individual situation and come up with a treatment plan that is uniquely yours.
Current licensing requirements dictate that patients must be geographically located in Arizona, California, Florida, Maryland, North Carolina or Virginia during the telemedicine visit.
1. First, click on the "Make an appointment now" button at the top of the page to start the process.
2. Complete the intake information as requested, complete every answer, sign the consent forms, and set up for IntakeQ, a secure messaging portal. Take time to give your physician all the information you can about your situation. This may take perhaps 10 to 30 minutes.
3. The intake information includes four forms, (the AUDITD, the OCDS, the PCL-5, and the PHQ-9) which help define your situation to make sure that Alcohol Recovery Medicine is a good fit for what you need. You can also fill out these forms on your computer; if you prefer to provide the information in this manner, be sure to save the completed forms by pressing the save button so the completed forms are available at your first visit.
4. Laboratory blood tests are often required to guide the choice of medication. If you already have recent laboratory test results, this may eliminate the need to order additional laboratory testing. These records and other confidential medical medical information should be uploaded securely through your IntakeQ patient portal.
5. Once you have been granted an appointment, you will an e-mail from IntakeQ so you can sign up for the portal to provide secure and confidential communication.
6. While you wait for your appointment, read the information on this website and begin making a record of each drink. Keep track of your OCDS total score so you can monitor your craving for alcohol. If you upload information to your IntakeQ portal every week about how much you drink and how much you crave alcohol, that information will be available in your medical chart to help guide your therapy.
7. Telemedicine visits work best with a high speed internet and a Google Chrome internet browser on your laptop. For your video telemedicine session, you will need to provide us with a personal contact whom we can call if you need help. For the same reason, we need to know where you will be located during our tele-interview. You will need a computer with a camera, good lighting, and a strong internet connection. You should also be situated where you can speak privately with the physician during your appointment.
8. When it is time for a scheduled telemedicine video call, patients can check in by clicking on the "start a telemedicine call" button below. If any problems occur during the telemedicine appointment, or you do not make contact with your physician at the appointed time, call the office number at (240) 801-3636.
Once you become our patient, we will follow up with you to help you achieve your long-term goals.
Fees and Payments
We provide a confidential, personalized approach. That is why Alcohol Recovery Medicine is a fee for service practice. For this reason, we need not and do not follow the often-restrictive guidelines outlined by many insurance companies. As a result, we do not contract with managed care or health insurance networks. However, patients can receive a comprehensive receipt after each appointment which can be submitted to their insurance company for reimbursement; we do not guarantee reimbursement.
The fee for a telemedicine visit is $150, and this is payable when you book your appointment. Your credit card will show a payment to A.R.M. If you are on a PPO plan, we are considered “out of network.” If you wish to be reimbursed for your sessions, you will need to consult your insurance company to determine its policies regarding mental health benefits for out of network providers. We do not submit claims.
Service fees may apply for certain items (such as completion of forms outside of a scheduled appointment, telephone appointments longer than 5 minutes, copying of records, etc.). We will inform you of any such charges before seeking payment. No refunds are issued for rendered services. You are strongly encouraged to discuss financial constraints with Dr. Umhau or his associates so that you can get the care you need.
Late Cancellation and No-Show to Appointments
We strive to provide personalized care tailored your needs. To allow us to do so, please adhere to appointment times. If you need to cancel or reschedule, please notify us at least 24 hours before the appointment time. Patients that do not cancel or reschedule appointments at least 24 hours in advance are charged in full for the for the missed appointment. Your time is valuable and so is ours. We have reserved time for you and, out of respect for your time and that of others, we plan around that reserved time. When you do not show up for your appointment, you are taking away valuable time that could have been used for someone else who needed to be seen. If you are not available at the starting time that you have booked for your appointment, your appointment may have to be cancelled and you will be charged for the full scheduled time. If you show up late, you will be able to use only the remaining time of your scheduled session; we cannot add extra time. Your insurance cannot be billed for missed appointments.
You may call our office phone, (240) 801-3636 for scheduling and routine messages. This voicemail is confidential, so please feel free to leave a message after-hours. If we are not immediately available by office telephone, please leave a detailed voice message and we will return your call as soon as possible. We attempt to be accessible for all urgent issues, but if your call is an emergency, please contact 911 immediately instead of calling the office. Emergency services are provided by all hospitals through their emergency rooms and do not require appointments. Email is not a confidential means of communication, and email may not always be received or responded to in a timely fashion. Please also note that email should never be used for clinical issues.
Mental health records are protected by both law and professional ethics. You are entitled to review a copy of your record, but given its professional nature and language, the record can occasionally be misinterpreted. In rare instances, we may determine that it would aggravate your problem or harm you if you were provided with your full records. In such a situation we may decline to furnish you your records, but we can make them available to an appropriate mental health professional of your choosing. Alternatively, your provider would gladly review them together with you, and/or provide a treatment summary. Please note that professional fees will be charged for any preparation time required to comply with such requests.
Communications concerning your care that Dr. Umhau and his colleagues have with you are confidential, and our website and patient message portal is designed for security and privacy. Aside from emergency situations, information regarding your care and treatment can be released with your written permission only. If you are seeking insurance reimbursement, insurance companies also often require information about diagnosis, treatment, and other important information as a condition of your insurance coverage.
There are legal exceptions to confidentiality that may require disclosure:
• Danger to self – if you make an explicit threat to harm yourself, our staff is required to seek hospitalization for you, or to contact family members or others who can help provide protection.
• Danger to others – if you make a threat of serious bodily harm to others, our staff is required to take protective actions, which may include notifying the potential victim, notifying the police, or seeking appropriate hospitalization.
• Grave disability – if, owing to a mental illness, you are unable to meet your basic needs, such as clothing, food, and shelter, our staff may have to disclose information to the authorities to access services to help meet those basic needs.
• Suspicion of child, elder, or dependent abuse – if there is an indication of abuse to a child, an elderly person, or a disabled person - even if it is about a party other than yourself - our staff must file a report with the appropriate state agency.
• Certain judicial proceedings – if you are involved in judicial proceedings, you have the right, subject to certain limits, to prevent Dr. Umhau and colleagues from providing any information about your treatment. In some circumstances in which you have put your emotional or physical condition or both in issue, however, a judge may require testimony through a subpoena or compel us to provide copies of your records to the lawyers involved in the case.
Additionally, we may be required to disclose your health information in the following circumstances: In the event of an emergency; if required by law; if there are substantial barriers to communicating with you, but in our professional judgement we believe that you intend for us to provide care; if ordered by the courts, government authorities, public health, law enforcement, coroners, or funeral directors; or in the event of organ donations, research, military activity, or for national security.
We reserve the right to consult with other professionals when appropriate. In these circumstances, your identity will not be revealed, and only important clinical information will be discussed. Please note that such consultants are also legally bound to keep this information confidential.
As much as our staff attempts to provide personalized treatment, this practice is not designed to manage crises, and Alcohol Recovery Medicine is not a crisis facility. Time sensitive issues such as this should be directed to your local crisis center. Area referrals may be provided during initial consultation and discussed during subsequent visits. Please refer to the information under Resources to familiarize yourself and your family of available resources.