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228 3rd Avenue North, Suite 100, Jacksonville Beach, Florida 32250, United States.

(904) 853-6130

Specialty center for Urogynecology and Women's Pelvic Floor Disorders

Specialty center for Urogynecology and Women's Pelvic Floor Disorders

Specialty center for Urogynecology and Women's Pelvic Floor DisordersSpecialty center for Urogynecology and Women's Pelvic Floor Disorders

First Coast Urogynecology response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

To our First Coast Urogynecology patients,


     As the situation surrounding coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has developed we are trying to find ways to minimize risk of exposure for our patients, staff, and community as well as continue to serve our patient’s needs. It is a fluid situation and we will try to update you as information comes available or if changes are needed.


Effective as of 3/21/2020


Scheduling Changes at First Coast Urogynecology, LLC:

1)  Due to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) situation, we will be changing our schedule to only see patients in the office setting on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  We will be conducting online tele-health visits (through your phone or computer) on Wednesday afternoons and Thursdays for your convenience as well.  We will also be closing our office a bit earlier than normal on office days to ensure we have adequate time to fully clean the office and still allow staff to return home on time.  Our office staff will be reaching out to patients if their currently scheduled appointment will be affected by these changes. 

2)  We will be reaching out to some of our patient’s and may be asking them to convert their in-office visit to a tele-health visit. We may be able to do this for routine follow up visits, semi-annual or annual visits, post-op well visits, or urinary tract infection symptoms (during this atypical time we will accommodate this).  We are doing this to reduce exposures for our patients and staff while also allowing patients to continue to be cared for in regard to their pelvic floor health. Please do not avoid care for your pelvic health needs, we are here for you and will find a way to make sure you are healthy and taken care of safely. We believe that tele-health services will help us to do this.  This service is now covered by most insurers (including medicare) and we can arrange for a reasonable fee schedule if your insurer does not cover this service.

3)  Please call the office if you are unable, or not willing, to be seen for your scheduled appointment.  Missed appointments will be treated per our standard practices which would include a fee – please don’t make us enforce this policy. We are making sure that staff are kept in the office so that we can continue to care for you (people who are putting themselves in harm’s way on your behalf).


Safe Office Visits at First Coast Urogynecology, LLC:

1)  Please do not come to the office if you have a fever >100.4, cough, chills, fatigue, GI distress, or other signs of upper respiratory illness/Flu or have known exposure to someone with COVID-19.

2)  We ask that patients come alone or with a maximum of 1 additional person.  We will not be allowing more than one person other than the patient to come into the office.

3)  After you check into the office, we will be asking patients/family members to wait in their cars or in the nearby surrounding area (the beach is a block away). We will reach you via your provided cellular phone number or can give you a clean temporary pager (like a restaurant pager) so that we can notify you when we are ready to see you.  We are trying to minimize patient risk/exposure in our waiting area.


Scheduled Hospital Based Surgeries For Our First Coast Urogynecology, LLC Patients:

1)  We are closely monitoring recommendations from local hospitals as well as regional and national specialty societies related to our field.  At this time, we need to ensure that the hospital system has appropriate staffing, resources, and available inpatient beds for those individuals with serious injury or illness, including COVID-19.

- Given these recommendations, and executive order 20-72 from Governor DeSantis, we are required to reschedule all elective surgeries.  We will be re-evaluating this decision approximately every 2 weeks to determine when we can restart these planned surgeries. 


We understand that this may be inconvenient, but we appreciate your cooperation as we take steps to ensure the safety and well- being of our patients, staff, and community.  We will do everything in our power to continue to serve the urogynecologic and pelvic floor needs of our community no mater the situation.  


Thank you,


Lee B. Epstein, MD MSc FACOG

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FAQ For Florida Blue Patients

To our First Coast Urogynecology patients,


First Coast Urogynecology, LLC is a member of the TopLine MD Alliance and VitalMD. If you have coverage with Blue Cross, you may have received a letter from them stating that our practice will be out-of-network as of April 1, 2020.


Despite our best good faith efforts, we have not been able to reach an agreement with Florida Blue. We are hopeful that Florida Blue will see the value that we bring to patients in order to avoid a full termination of the contract effective March 31, 2020.  We do not believe that patients should be asked to break the strong patient-physician bond that we share and we will do whatever we can to preserve our role in your care.  We are particularly saddened by this given the current medical environment and our desire to be available for all of our patients no matter their insurance.


Florida Blue patients who are actively being evaluated/treated for a medical problem should be eligible for a continuity of care exemption to these changes. Our office can help to see if you are eligible for this. If you are not eligible for a continuity of care exemption, than your out-of-network benefit rates would apply.


There are a number of ways you can help while Florida Blue discusses an agreement with our practice (First Coast Urogynecology/VitalMD). We encourage you to voice your concerns by calling Florida Blue's Member services line at 1-800-352-2583 or visit the Florida Blue Facebook or Twitter page to post a comment or tweet a message of concern.


Thank you,

Lee B. Epstein, MD MSc FACOG

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