Frequently Asked Questions

Have questions? You may find the answers below.

General

If you are in immediate dangeror someone has been hurt, call 911.

 

If you or someone you know is thinkingabout suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline 24/7 at 988.

 

Paradise Behavioral Health is an outpatient mental health office. We do not provide emergency or crisis services.

Please allow up to 48 hours for your provider to respond to your message.

 

Log into your Patient Portal. Click on the “Messages” button in the menu at the top of the page. On the Messages page, click the “Ask A Question” button. In the “Subject” dropdown, select “Ask Physician/Provider Directly”. In the “Physician” dropdown, select your providers name. Type your message. Click “Send Message”.

Text or call our office at 941-347-8341.

 

Paradise has a strict no show policy. You must cancel or reschedule at least 48 hours before your appointment or you will be charged a $115 no show fee that must be paid before you can schedule your next appointment.

Our providers availability changes, for the most up-to-date appointment availability text or call our office at (941) 347-8341.

 

If you are wanting to become a new patient, before we schedule you with a provider you must complete all the new patient forms first. After all the forms are properly completed we will schedule your first appointment. Forms can be done electronically or in our office and can be easily completed in 20-30mins.

Yes. We offer telemedicine through the HIPAA compliant Zoom app.

One of our office staff will call you with a time estimate of when your provider will be in the telemedicine call.

As soon as your telemedicine call is complete, one of our office staff will call you to schedule your next appointment.

New Patients

1. Complete our new patient intake: https://patientportal.advancedmd.com/138295/onlineintake/disclaimer

 

2. After one of our team members has reviewed your intake form, you will be sent a link to set up a patient portal account. All of the new patient forms will be available for your review and signature in your patient portal.

 

3. Schedule an appointment.

Paradise cannot provide any service for out of state residents. For a patient to be considered a Florida resident they must have a valid ID with a Florida address and their pharmacy must be in Florida.

 

For patients that have multiple residences in different states, they must prove they have a Florida address by providing a government ID or utility bill AND have a pharmacy in their chart within the state of Florida.

You are serious about taking getting well and living an optimal lifestyle. You will make every effort to take our recommendations knowing we have your best interest in mind. Paradise Behavioral Health offers a holistic approach to wellness, not just medications.

Watch this video for step by step instructions.

 

Log into your Patient Portal and click on the “Forms” button at the top of the page.

Patient Portal

In order for us to enhance communication and patient experience, you will be required to register for a Patient Portal. If you are a new patient, we will send you an e-mail with a link to start the registration process. 

 

Use your patient portal to:
– Request refills
– Message your provider
– View your chart records
– Pay your bill
– Sign forms

 

Log into your patient portal here.

Watch this video for step by step instructions.

Watch this video for step by step instructions.

Medication

The fastest way to request a refill is by logging into your Patient Portal and clicking on the “Prescriptions” button at the top of the page.

 

Please note that Paradise does not process emergency refills. Refills are only processed Monday-Wednesday. Refills must be requested at least 1 week before you run out of medications. Please check when your prescription expires and plan accordingly. Call your pharmacy to check on the status of your prescription before making any refill requests to our office.

Yes. If a controlled medication is being prescribed, a urine drug screen needs to be completed prior to the refill.

Your provider needs to understand your situation and reason for wanting to change medication to ensure the right change is being made. You must schedule an appointment with your provider to discuss any changes.

Brain Well Program

We do not accept insurance for the Brain Well program. All initial evaluations and follow up appointments are self-pay. You can use your insurance for most of the labs. For you to use your insurance for labs, you must first have a psych evaluation before any lab orders can be created. This is a separate appointment from your Brain Well evaluation.

We do not offer any payment plan. If you are a veteran or active military there is help through the Warriors Angel Foundation. You must apply at their website: https://warriorangelsfoundation.org

The enrollment fee into the Brain Well program is $2500 for self-pay and $1000 if you use your insurance. The self-pay rate includes the labs for your hormone panel, depression panel, UDS and comprehensive evaluation only.

Genetic testing is not included in the enrollment fee and can be an additional fee depending on your insurance. *If you have Medicare or Tricare genetic testing is free. You will not pay anything out of pocket.

The cost for vitamins, supplements, and medication can vary based on your customized treatment plan. It can be anywhere from $150-$400 per month. This is only an estimate and going through the lab tests and creating your treatment plan will determine the actual costs.

The commitment is for 12 months. You will need your labs done and a follow up appointment with your provider every 3 months. After the 12 months is complete, we recommend doing an annual checkup of all your hormone levels.

The best place to learn about patients who have gone through the Brain Well program and Dr. Mark Gordon’s protocol is to watch the movie Quiet Explosions. This can be found on YouTube for only $2.99: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cwTXAyNxTIk

You need to be fully committed to the treatment plan in order to become successful. This requires you to take your vitamins, supplements, and medication every single day. Changing your diet to reduce inflammation and getting regular exercise is needed. The items in your treatment plan alone will help but to get the full benefits of the program will require some lifestyle changes.

Click here to find a list of YouTube videos, podcasts, and articles that showcasing Dr. Mark Gordon and the work he has done.

TMS Program

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of depression. TMS is typically used when other depression treatments haven’t been effective.

Depression is a treatable condition, but for some people, standard treatments aren’t effective and TMS can be a great alternative.

Our treatment protocol calls for 36 sessions. Sessions should be completed daily, five times a week, and completed within 6-8 weeks.

 

The length of each treatment session varies per person, typically lasting between 20-45 mins.

Your first consult will be with our TMS coordinator to learn more about TMS and how it can help you. During this consult, you will have all your questions answered.

Before treatment begins, your doctor will identify the best placement for the electromagnetic coil near your forehead and the effective level of magnetic energy for you.

 

The electromagnet delivers a magnetic pulse that stimulates nerve cells in the region of your brain that controls mood.

Every patient responds differently to TMS treatments. Typically patients will notice change around week 3-4. A small percentage will notice results in the first week.

Everyone varies with their treatment plan. We monitor your results and your doctor will decide if another round of treatment will be beneficial.

Personal check-in: Are you starting to feel like your old self again? Do you find yourself wanting to engage in your hobbies and socialize?

Medical check-in: Every week we will ask you to complete a form called the PHQ9, a short questionnaire used to monitor your progress.

While TMS is considered safe and well-tolerated, some patients report experiencing headaches. If you experience any side effects, let us know right away as your doctor can adjust the level of stimulation to alleviate any discomfort.

Billing

Yes. Log into your patient portal and click the Bills button.

Click here for a list of accepted insurances.

Log into your patient portal and click the Messages button.

On the next page, click on the Ask A Question button.

If you select Billing & Payments in the Subject dropdown, your message will be sent to our billing department.

There are a wide variety of factors to consider. Our team first will first need to determine if you need to see a psychiatrist, a med manager, or a therapist. 

If you have health insurance, the amount will vary depending on your individual plan coverage.

If you do not have health insurance, please contact our office for current self pay rates.

Depression Treatment

Treating depression depends on a number of factors. The most important part depends on you. Showing up to all your scheduled appointments, being 100% honest with your provider, and following their plans and recommendations. We want you to get well but we need you to do your part.

Genetic testing assesses your genes to help your provider make smarter, more personalized treatment decisions. Each person is unique and we all respond to medication differently. We want to make sure we find the best treatment options for you. Speak to your provider to learn more about genetic testing.

Telemedicine

Telemedicine, also known as telehealth or virtual care, is the use of telecommunications technology to provide healthcare services remotely.

The benefits of telemedicine include increased access to care, convenience, improved quality of care, cost savings, and reduced risk of infection transmission.

Telemedicine can be used for a variety of healthcare services, including psychiatric evaluations, med management, therapy, case management, MAT programs, and more.

You will need a device with a camera and microphone, such as a smartphone, tablet, or computer, as well as a reliable internet connection. We use Zoom as our telemedicine platform.

Yes, telemedicine platforms use encryption and other security measures to protect your personal health information. Telemedicine consultations are also subject to the same privacy regulations as in-person consultations.

Please make sure that you properly enable your audio on your device by clicking on “Call Using Internet Audio” when joining the call. Also, make sure that the volume on your device is turned up/on and not on mute.

If you are unable to set up Zoom on your personal device, you can come into our office to do your telemedicine appointment. We will not provide technical support over the phone, we can only help you set up Zoom by coming into our office.

The cost of telemedicine services may vary depending on your healthcare provider and insurance coverage. Some providers may offer telemedicine services at a lower cost than in-person visits. Please check with your provider to see what the cost will be for your specific visit.

Many insurance companies now cover telemedicine services. Please check with your insurance provider to see if telemedicine is covered under your plan or you can text or call our office at (941) 347-8341.

You must schedule an appointment with our office to submit a drug test at least 7 days before your appointment. We are open for drug tests Monday-Thursday 9am-4pm.

We have had problems with patients receiving telemedicine and patient portal emails sent to their Hotmail and Yahoo account. We recommend using another email address such as Gmail for your patient portal account. Please text or call our office at (941) 347-8341 and we can update your email address for you.

The fastest and easiest way to schedule a telemedicine appointment is by completing an online application. Apply Online Today. You can also text or call our office at (941) 347-8341 to complete an application.

If you prefer to have an in-person visit, you may request one. Most of our providers offer in-person and telemedicine appointments. Office appointments are limited and may require additional time before your first appointment.

Psychiatric Evaluation

We prefer the initial visit to be in-office if possible, allowing you to meet with your provider face to face.

We can also offer a telemedicine appointment through the HIPAA compliant Zoom app.

We accept most major insurances. See full list of insurance providers. During the application process we will review your insurance coverage. After verification, we will share your copay and any deductibles you may have.

For current self pay rates, please text or call our office at (941) 347-8341.

The duration of a psychiatric evaluation varies from one person to another. The amount of information needed helps to determine the amount of time the assessment takes. Typically, a psychiatric evaluation lasts for 45 to 60 minutes to ensure a comprehensive and accurate evaluation.

A psychiatric evaluation has several steps. Your provider will ask about symptoms, personal history, family history, recent/past traumatic experience, any problems with drug or alcohol use, and overall health.

 

It’s important to answer the questions accurately and truthfully. This will help your provider make an accurate diagnosis. Some mental illnesses are hard to diagnose. In such cases, additional tests may be needed.

A psychiatric evaluation not only helps to diagnose a mental disorder but also guides treatment planning.

 

Most mental disorders need ongoing treatment. After receiving your treatment plan, you will be encouraged to stick to the plan for best results.

 

A treatment plan will be customized to each persons needs. You custom plan could include a combination of the following:

Medication
Psychotherapy
Nutrition & Nutraceuticals
Lifestyle (Exercise, Sleep, Meditation, Environment)
Hormone Therapy
Non Medication Treatments (TMS, HBOT, Light Therapy)

This will vary depending on your individual needs treatment plan.

 

Typically, you will see your psychiatrist/med manager once a month and your therapist once a week, or as recommended.

A psychiatrist or med manger will be the one to decide the best treatment plan for you.


A therapist provides talk therapy. They are there to listen and help you find ways to cope.

Yes.

 

If you are undergoing procedures like cosmetic or bariatric surgeries, your surgeon may request a psychological evaluation before surgery to help assess your readiness for surgery.

PTSD

We prefer the initial visit to be in-office if possible, allowing you to meet with your provider face to face.

We can also offer a telemedicine appointment through the HIPAA compliant Zoom app if you are not able to come into our office in Punta Gorda.

The most effective treatments for PTSD typically include a combination of therapy, medication, and lifestyle changes. Different people may respond better to different types of therapy, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR), or exposure therapy. Medications such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) may also be prescribed to help alleviate symptoms. It’s important to work with a qualified mental health professional to develop a personalized treatment plan.

Recovery from PTSD is a gradual process that can take several months to several years, depending on the severity of the symptoms and the individual’s response to treatment. It’s important to focus on progress rather than a specific timeline and to be patient and persistent in working towards recovery.

PTSD is a chronic condition, which means that symptoms can persist even with treatment. However, with effective treatment and ongoing management, symptoms can be reduced and quality of life can be improved.

PTSD symptoms can recur after treatment, especially during times of stress or exposure to triggers. It’s important to continue with maintenance therapy and self-care strategies to prevent symptom recurrence.

There are several alternative treatments that have shown positive results in treating PTSD, including HRT (hormone replacement therapy), nutrition, exercise, supplementation, and meditation & mindfulness activites. While these treatments may not be effective for everyone, they can be a helpful addition to a comprehensive treatment plan. Please ask our staff about the Brain Well program for treating PTSD.

This will vary depending on your individual needs treatment plan.

 

Typically, you will see your psychiatrist/med manager once a month and your therapist once a week, or as recommended.

The most effective treatment plans for PTSD do include you seeing a psychiatrist and therapist. A psychiatrist or med manager will be the one to decide the best treatment plan for you. A therapist provides talk therapy. They are there to listen and help you find ways to cope.