Thoracic Surgery and Oncology
Appointment Information

To make an appointment, please call the clinic where you would like to be seen. If your insurance plan requires, you may need a referral from your primary care physician, or the doctor currently treating you, to make your first appointment.

After scheduling an appointment, complete the physician contact information form, to provide information about other doctors treating you, and bring the form with you to the clinic.

If you have any questions regarding the form, please contact the clinic.

Your First Appointment

We recommend that you bring a family member or friend to your first appointment. We make every effort to see you as close to your scheduled appointment time as possible. However, there may be delays beyond our control. Please plan on spending two to three hours at your first appointment.

The review of your medical records is a vital part of your evaluation at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center. Your medical records must be received at least one day before your appointment so that we can prepare fully for your visit. You may fax, express mail or hand carry your records to our offices. Please don't use the regular mail since there is no guarantee that we will receive your medical records prior to your appointment.

Please provide the following with your medical records, which we need to receive at least one day before your appointment:

  • Copies of all records relevant to your medical condition, including medical records from physicians who referred you. This also may include records from your primary care physician, gynecologist, oncologist or surgeon.
  • Pathology reports of any biopsy or test you had done. If you are seeing a surgeon, please also bring actual glass pathology slides.
  • Any X-rays, mammograms, magnetic resonance images (MRIs) or any other films that relate to your medical condition and written reports that accompany those films.
  • Copies of all of your insurance cards.
  • A list of all of your physicians including their mailing addresses, telephone and fax numbers.

It is very important that you contact your insurance company before your appointment to receive approval, called "prior authorization," for your visit to our clinics. Unfortunately, if you don't obtain necessary authorization, you will be responsible for all charges associated with your care. Please read the following insurance informatin for further recommendations.

Insurance Information

Before going to your appointment, please review your insurance benefits. You can call your insurance company or consult the insurance information provided by your insurance carrier. Each insurance plan has rules that must be followed to receive full benefits. If your insurance plan requires prior authorization for office visits to a specialist, please fax referrals and authorizations to the clinic prior to your appointment. If we don't receive these referrals and authorizations, you will be responsible for all charges associated with your appointment.

Social Work Services

Social workers are available to meet with you and your family to discuss financial issues, such as short- or long-term disability income, insurance coverage and special programs that assist people with cancer; support groups and referrals to a psychologist or chaplain; family issues such as care giving and talking to children about cancer; and lodging and transportation.

To contact a social worker, call the Cancer Resource Center at (415) 885-3693 and ask for the social worker assigned to your doctor.

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