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Old 03-05-2018, 04:11 PM
11 posts, read 16,602 times
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Can anyone comment on the procedure for getting a new primary care physician when moving in from another state? We are moving in 2019 to the Leland, NC area. One of us will be 65 (on Medicare) and the other will only be 64. I have heard through the grapevine that finding a PCP is not so easy, and also that, no matter what type of insurance you have, you have to get a "referral" from your PCP to see any other specialist (in the state where we are now, you only need a referral if you have an HMO, not if you have a PPO). I am starting to get a little worried about this. Is there some kind of shortage of PCPs in the Leland area? Why would the process be any different from any other state? Then again, maybe the people reporting this were misinformed, but I have heard this twice: once from a friend in Wilmington who moved down there, and again from a transplant to Leland. Can someone please give me the straight story?

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Old 03-05-2018, 04:15 PM
Location: Upstairs closet
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Not much in Leland beside houses. And it’s like they are breeding. Lots of docs in Wilmington, might not be ultra convenient.

Too many people moving to Brunswick County focus on the positive aspects of costs/expenses, and fail to realize there is a trade off. Nothing new, it’s been like that way for years.

Good luck. I’d look for a doc in Wilmington.
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Old 03-05-2018, 04:36 PM
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I moved to Southport and had no problem getting a primary physician. Your insurance would determine whether or not a referral to a specialist is needed from a PCP or not. Mine doesn't.

Leland is served by 2 hospitals. Novant Brunswick, a small hospital in the "town" of Supply, NC about 10 -15 minutes from Leland. It is operated by very highly regarded Novant Health. New Hanover Regional, a giant 700 bed hospital is in Wilmington that is also about 15 minutes from Leland. Both health systems have doctors practices in Leland. Here are the PCP practices in Leland:

Batish Family Medicine

New Hanover also has a variety of specialists in Leland. Wilmington Orthopedics has an office in Leland and is about to construct an outpatient surgery senter there. There are other specialists at Novant Brunswick Hospital, and of course, at New Hanover Regional. Health care is not a problem in Leland.
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Old 03-05-2018, 05:01 PM
Location: Leland, NC
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We didn't have a problem getting a PCP when we moved here, but it took a month for the appointment to see him.
We joined NHMG associated with New Hanover hospital. It's a large group, and you may be assigned to different doctors depending on your ailment. This is a change from the small family practice we were used to in NJ, but not a bother except for the wait for an appt.
There are a number of PCPs who state up front that they don't take new medicare patients.
On the plus side, when they refer us to a specialist, they make the appointment since it's all within the same group.
All in all, I'm satisfied... as we age I'd rather have the use of a larger group.

The area is exploding with new residents, I'd expect the supply to catch up to the demand. Funny thing is there's no wait for dentist appointments.
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Old 03-05-2018, 06:16 PM
Location: Sneads Ferry, NC
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Originally Posted by Slade51 View Post
....We joined NHMG associated with New Hanover hospital....
I also have also had positive experiences with New Hanover Regional Medical Group. Initially, I found no trouble getting an independent primary care doctor in Surf City. However, I would prefer an Internal Medicine doc as opposed to a family practice doc, but Internal Medicine people seem to be in short supply.

Many specialists do insist on a referral. I think that is to ensure that the primary care doc screens you first. I have not had problems getting an appoiment with specialists, but it is usually 2 to 3 weeks.
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Old 03-06-2018, 07:52 AM
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Thank you all for the responses, especially BC1960 for providing those links. This sets my mind more at ease as we get closer to the move.
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