Dr. Matthew P. Harbaugh

12 May

Provider name: Dr. Matthew P. Harbaugh
Practice name: Penn Plum Family Medicine
Address: UPMC St. Margarets 100 Delafield Rd #108, Pittsburgh, PA 15215
Phone: (412) 795-7366
Website: http://findadoc.upmc.com/PhysicianBioQuery.aspx?EPCDID=157863

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Primary Care Practitioner

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

Migraines, General Checkup, Cold Sore Treatment

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

I was suffering very vague and confusing symptoms. Dr. Harbaugh was extremely considerate and thorough in evaluating and determining the cause of them. Also very receptive and patient with any minor concerns I’ve had.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

 They accepted my UPMC insurance.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

Very supportive and respectful in demeanor. I feel completely comfortable talking about any medical issue with this provider.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

 No complaints

What identities do you have?    

 White, Straight, 32, Female, Able-bodied

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

 Mentioned that he has treated new immigrants before

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

 He is young, white and male.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 Parking is $5 I believe

 

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Dr. Mary Pat Friedlander

12 May

Provider name: Mary Pat Friedlander
Practice name: Lawrenceville Family Health
Address: Butler St. at 40th St., Pittsburgh PA 15201

Phone: 412-622-7343
Website: http://findadoc.upmc.com/PhysicianBioQuery.aspx?EPCDID=4537

What type of medicine does the provider practice?

Primary Care, Gynecology

Would you recommend the provider to others?

Yes. She doesn’t know much about alternative health, but Dr. Friedlander is very respectful, is a very good communicator, is a great listener. She trusts me and helps me with what I say I need without getting into any power struggles. She treats me like I’m the expert about my own body and yet shares helpful information and insights.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?

She’s white, middle aged, seems straight but seems very open and respectful. Don’t know how far her knowledge of eg LGBTQ or Black communities extends.

Why did you see this provider?

Check up, get answers to some questions.

What was your experience making an appointment with this provider?

Easy to make an appointment.

Was the provider affordable?

It’s a UPMC community health center so they take all forms of UPMC insurance and medical assistance. I think they still have a social worker that can get people signed up for reduced care but I’m not positive of that.

Please describe your experience with the provider:

Easy to get prescriptions and referrals, answers all questions thoroughly and without rushing, she’s also great at gyne exams (she teaches interns how to do them respectfully and properly). I always feel good when I leave visits with her.

Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff:

Nurses respond really well and promptly to calls to the nurse’s line. They really help communication with the doctors.

What identities do you have?

White, 50s, female, queerish, don’t have physical disability, lower income, body not particularly big or small.

Please describe the accessibility of the practice for you:

Clinic seems very physically accessible. On bus line, free parking. Didn’t see any Braille, didn’t see signs for interpreters, didn’t notice materials in other languages but they may be around. I THINK they have the bathrooms as one room with both gender signs on it.

When was your last visit with this provider?

0-5 months ago

 

 

Dr. Emily Ketterer

13 Apr

Provider name: Dr. Emily Ketterer
Practice name: UMPC St. Margret Lawrenceville Family Health Center
Address, Pittsburgh, PA zip: Located at 40th and Butler next door to the Rite Aid3937 Butler St.
Pittsburgh, PA 15201

Phone: 412-622-7343
Website:  http://stmargarets.familymedicine.pitt.edu/person/emily-ketterer-md

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Family Practice/ Psychiatrist

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months

Why did/do you see this provider?

She is my PCP and helps me navigate lots of different things.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

 Its been getting a little more difficult lately, but she can see people at other sites.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

 Yes. They accept all insurances and I have MA

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

 Dr. Ketterer is interested and respecting. She is a feminist and happy to share that part of herself. She is trained in both family medicine and psychiatry which I found helpful. She is very efficient and reads records carefully. The wait is never long.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

Everyone is pleasant and quick.  

What identities do you have?    

I am a cys-gendered, white, queer, able bodied, college educated, english speaking, 29 year old.

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

 I don’t know.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

 White English speaking women.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 Very accessible as far as I could tell.

Additional Information:

 I would recommend seeing this doctor if you need a solid PCP and a psychiatrist. I think she is 4th year resident, so I am not sure how long she will be staying.

Dr. Matthew Holtzman//Hillman Cancer Center

5 Apr

Dr. Matthew Holtzman
Hillman Cancer Center
UPMC Cancer Pavilion
Division of Surgical Oncology
Fourth Floor Suite 420
5150 Centre Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15232
412-692-2852

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

 Surgical oncologist

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

Yes. Dr. Holtzman is very personable. He helped me understand my pathology report and the surgery I was going to have, and took time to answer me and my family’s many questions. I realize that if you need to see a surgical oncologist choices are pretty limited, so I’m mainly writing this to ease your fears around the doctor piece if you find yourself in that situation and are queer/trans.

When was your last visit with the provider          

 0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

 Melanoma

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

 Everything was fast. My appointment was 4 days after I called.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

I don’t think any surgical oncologists are affordable, and I don’t know Hillman’s policies for low-income and uninsured folks. However, he did say that he would help me fight a weird anesthesia bill I got if needed.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

I’m white, transmasculine though only read as male about 75% of the time, mid thirties, have a female partner, slim. He wasn’t weird about me being trans. We didn’t discuss it with that word but we did talk about me being on testosterone. He used male pronouns, and also ordered a pregnancy test (standard before any surgery for folks with a uterus and good care.) Nice to my partner and involved her in conversations.       

 What identities do you have?    

White, transmasculine though only read as male about 75% of the time, mid thirties, have a female partner, slim, middle class, able-bodied.          

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

White, cis, straight male in his forties.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

Hillman is very accessible. Valet parking. Gender neutral bathrooms once you’re back where the exam rooms are.

 

Leah Helou//UPMC Mercy Voice Center

5 Apr

Leah Helou
UPMC Mercy Voice Center
UPMC Mercy Hospital Building D, Suite 2100
1400 Locust Street Pittsburgh, PA 15219
Phone: 412-232-3687
Fax: 412-232-8488

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Voice and Respiratory Therapy 

Would you recommend this provider to others?

Yes              

 When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

Voice and breathing issues stemming from nerve paralysis after thyroidectomy, but also other voice issues 

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

I see two other doctors at this place so I usually make the appointments with the front desk or online at the myupmc.com portal

Was/is the provider affordable?              

UPMC type of Medicaid covers unlimited sessions, not sure about other insurances, I assume OOP is expensive but UPMC does have financial aid

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

Leah is very pleasant and knowledgeable. Vocal and respiratory coaching is really intimate and she is good at helping me feel at ease. She also is the founder of the UPMC transgender voice training program so- even though I was not seeking transgender vocal coaching- it was nice to have a provider I was more likely to be safe with as a trans person. She is good at tailoring things to work for you and good at understanding relationships between (what some cultures separate into) mind and body.  

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

Front desk at this place is always really nice and helpful towards me.

What identities do you have?    

Transgender, transmasculine, queer, white, (somewhat invisibly) disabled, medium to chubby in size, goth/punk looking, mid 30s, poverty line disability income

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

trans and queer people

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

I think she is a white cisgender woman but I don’t know anything else about her. She seems to have lefty politics based on who she’s into creating spaces for.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

Mercy hospital has a garage that is free for the first 2 hours and paid after that. There are usually handicapped spots open on at least one of the levels (usually more). There is a walkway to the hospital on level D of the garage that I prefer because it is close to elevators. It has automated doors. The Voice center is right across from the purple elevator once you take it up to the 2nd floor. Many doors are automated but the door to the voice center itself is not I do not think. There are two single stall gender neutral restrooms in the waiting room. There is braille on some signage in the hospital. Mercy is about a block up from forbes and 5th where many buses run. There are always wheelchairs near the walkway from the garage and I assume it is ok to grab one and use one when needed. There is also a staff person at a desk when you first come in from the walkway if you have questions.

 

Dr. Paige Forrest/Forrest Psychiatry

20 Feb

Dr. Paige Forrest
Forrest Psychiatry
1102 S. Braddock Ave 
Pittsburgh, PA 15218 
Office: (412) 404-3081

http://forrestpsychiatry.com

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Psychiatry 

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes!

When was your last visit with the provider          

 0 – 5 months

Why did/do you see this provider?         

 Multiple episodes of depression

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

So easy! She’s very quick to respond and likes to correspond through email. This is convenient for people who hate phone tag. She does everything in her office herself, so you always make appointments directly with her. Once you’re a patient, she has an online portal that shows all her available appointments. You can make requests there and usually get a confirmation in less than 24 hrs.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

Dr. Forrest accepts most major insurance that I know of.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

She is very warm and easy to talk to. She has great insight, and from my experience with psychiatrists, is very dynamic and integrative in her practice. She seems to really think outside of norms and is very progressive with her treatment. She’s also willing to let you try whatever treatment options you want, within reason, and is very available if you have any questions or need help. She actually wants to get to know you and what you’re experiencing. Though she is not practicing as a therapist, her visits always feel very refreshing and helpful. Also, she herself is LGBTQ and is very open about this.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

 She runs her own practice, so she’s her own support.

What identities do you have?    

Young, white, female, queer, able-bodied, college educated, working cash poor  

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

Very LGBTQ friendly, and in my experience, would be accommodating of any needs 

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

White, female, LGBTQ

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 It’s on the second floor of a building. As far as I know, it’s only accessible by stairs, but knowing her disposition, she may be willing/able to make accommodations.

 

Dr. Michael Lucke/Lupus Center of Excellence

17 Feb

Dr. Michael Lucke

Lupus Center of Excellence

Located in West Penn Hospital in Bloomfield

(412) 578-1152 for Lupus Center of Excellence

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Rheumatologist

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

I would recommend Dr. Lucke wholeheartedly. He’s a very good listener which feels rare in a MD, he keeps up to date on current research in his field, and he’s generally pleasant and caring.

When was your last visit with the provider          

 0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

Pain, autoimmune disorder, ankylosing spondylitis

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

They’re very busy, so appointments can take a while which was challenging when my health issues were still undiagnosed/untreated. It’s less of an issue now for regular maintenance appointments, since I can make them well in advance.

I’ve had some very poor experiences with the office in terms of timeliness and completion/communication of things like insurance authorizations, test results, and prescriptions, and actually filed a formal complaint at one point. Phone contact has been up and down; there have been periods where it has been extremely difficult to reach anyone or it’s taken days on end to get a response, and other periods where they’ve been more accessible. Hopefully this is improving, but it was extremely frustrating when I was still trying to get a diagnosis.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

My Highmark insurance made it very affordable, and the doctor has been helpful in suggesting ways to make my extremely-expensive maintenance medication more affordable.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

I’m queer, white, and transmasculine/genderqueer. I read as male and use he/him pronouns, but I opted not to come out as trans to this provider as I didn’t consider it relevant. Dr. Lucke has always been perfectly respectful and appropriate, and he’s fully aware that I’m queer, but I think he probably doesn’t know that I’m trans, so I can’t really speak to that. That said, I think he’d probably be fine if I did come out to him. He’s very kind and conscientious compared to most docs I’ve experienced, he’s an excellent listener, he’s very patient and willing to answer all questions and concerns. I don’t ever feel brushed off, and he shows that he cares about his patients. Overall I’m extremely pleased with him as a doctor.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

 They’ve all been very polite and friendly. No bad experiences.

What identities do you have?    

White, queer, young, transmasculine, college-educated. I am largely able-bodied, but experience occasional periods of disability when I have flare-ups of my autoimmune disease.

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

Unsure 

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

Dr. Lucke is a white male, his staff is mostly white and Black women.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

The office is within a hospital, so the building is fairly accessible with ramps, elevators, etc. I believe there is braille on the placards, but I don’t recall for sure. The hospital is accessible via many bus lines (86, 87, 54, 64), and there’s a parking garage or street parking.

Dr. Ryan J. Soose/UPMC Mercy (UPMC Mercy – Division of Sinonasal Disorders and Allergy)

17 Feb

Dr. Ryan J. Soose

UPMC Mercy (UPMC Mercy – Division of Sinonasal Disorders and Allergy)

1400 Locust St. Bldg. D, Suite 2100

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Office Phone: (412) 232-3687

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Otolaryngology/Ear Nose & Throat Doctor specializing in Sleep Disorders

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

Multiple Sleep Problems

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

It was difficult because I didn’t have a name at first and my rheumatologist told me to see any ENT, but each ENT has a specification, and I had to deal with UPMC central scheduling not understanding all of those specifications. I had to wait many months for an appointment with this guy because he sees a lot of patients and first appointments take more time. Now that I am in the system and have his name, appointments are easy to make on myupmc.com. 

Was/is the provider affordable?              

I am on medicaid UPMC so I do not pay anything for specialists. Uninsured or folks without insurance that covers UPMC would not find this affordable. Insured may depending on coverage.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

This guy is extremely thorough, knowledgeable, and a good listener. He knows a lot about sleep disorders and neurological issues on top of ENT issues. I have had sleep problems since I was a child that have often been dismissed or ignored by doctors until recently. He not only took them seriously but was able to discover the (neurological) issue with sleep studies. He also went the extra mile- my sleep data was weird and he had something like 4 different specialists analyze the data to make sure they agreed with his finding. He gave me multiple options and multiple possible explanations for issues as well as ruled out apnea. Note for trans people: I never told him preferred pronouns (it is tiring and I often don’t have the energy) so he used pronouns matching my gender marker on my medical forms, not my gender. If pronouns are important to you, make sure you tell them or remind them if they don’t match your gender marker. Folks in this office have told me they welcome the correction. UPMC Mercy’s ENT department is my favorite doctors office for this and other reasons.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

Staff was nice. He had a couple of students/residents in the room that he was teaching while he saw me. I don’t mind this because I like contributing to education and research so that my population is better represented. The staff at this place are always really nice to me. I see multiple providers here.

What identities do you have?    

white, 34 years old, trans masculine but my gender is read in different ways all the time by people, butch, queer, disabled, working class but not working, chubby, tattoos

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

I know this office does voice therapy and coaching for trans people so they are familiar with having trans people in their office and waiting room. And their doctors are highly specialized in various fields.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

White guy. Not sure of anything else.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

This hospital has free parking for 3 hours and is about 1 block away from Forbes where many buses stop. There is an elevator in the garage and a walkway into the hospital from one of the floors. Many doors are electronically operated in the hospital but the ENT office itself is not. The office waiting room has 2 gender neutral single stall restrooms and a water fountain. I think many signs at UPMC have braille. As far as some of my hospital experiences go, average amount of walking to get from my car to the office. The elevator is close to the garage walkway and the elevator opens right in front of the ENT office.

Dr. April Dunmeyer/UPMC Reproductive Services

17 Feb

Dr. April Dunmeyer

UPMC Reproductive Services

Offices in Blawnox and Monroeville

412-802-3100

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

OB/GYN

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

Yes, she is thorough and spent needed time.

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago

Why did/do you see this provider?         

HPV

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

Easy and quickly.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

Highmark was first accepted and being phased out. My insurance switched to UPMC and more has been covered.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

I felt like she was easy to talk to and gave honest answers to my concerns.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

 Everyone was nice.

What identities do you have?    

White, woman, 40 yrs old, queer/bi, able-bodied, working class           

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

 Provider is a young woman

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 Accessible. With ramps and elevators, though there is some climb from the parking area to the door.

Additional Information:

 I had out-patient surgery with Dr. Dunmeyer and it went smoothly. So far, so good.

Larry Moreland/UPMC Arthritis and Autoimmunity Center

20 Dec

Larry Moreland

UMPC Arthritis and Autoimmunity Center

Falk Medical Building

3601 Fifth Ave.

Suite 2B

Pittsburgh, PA 15213

You go in the front and right up the strairs and the office is to the left.

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Rheumatology.

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes. I very much liked the ALL the office staff. It was a great experience.

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago.

Why did/do you see this provider?         

I was being scanned for autoimmune diseases.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

I think Dr. Moreland is hard to get into see, but there are other Doctors in the office. I had to make the 1st appointment two months out, which was fine because I wasn’t in a rush.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

 They made sure that my insurance would cover all costs.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

 Dr. Moreland was kind. He didn’t say much, or give me much information, but that was okay with me as I had done a lot of research.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

 All the staff were amazing. They seemed to be happy and supportive of each other and the patients.

What identities do you have?    

 White, cis-gendered, queer, lady, middle class, able bodied, college educated.

Tell us if the provider or practice is especially good with a certain community, has special skills or services.           

People in pain and maybe without being able to figure out what is causing it. Dr. Moreland wanted to help me find the best answers he could and affirmed my choices. 

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

White man, that’s all I know. 

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 There were patients with a variety of accessibility needs that seemed to be attended to. Wheelchair accessible. I am not sure about parking, but there aren’t bike racks out front.

Metro Family Practice/Dr. Katherine Homrok

12 Dec

Katherine A. Homrok, M.D.       

Metro Community Health Center           

 1789 S Braddock Ave #410

 Pittsburgh, PA 15218

mchcpgh.org

412-247-2310

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Family medicine, geriatric medicine.

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

Yes. My experience with this provider is limited, though.

When did you last see this provider?

0-5 months ago.

Why did you see this provider?

I have seen this provider for two annual wellness check-ups. I also saw them when I was having heart palpitations and needed an EKG test (a test that checks for electrical problems with the heart).

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

  1. Phone – Most times I’ve had to leave a message but I get a prompt call-back. I was especially grateful for how quickly Metro called me back when I was having an issue and they recommended that I be seen right away.
  2. Patient Portal – Metro has a way to schedule online. I tried to make an appointment online once and it was either confusing or the system wasn’t working well. I ended up scheduling for the wrong time and needed to call to change it. I think it would be useful if it worked better.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

Both Highmark and UPMC PPO have paid for my care at Metro. They serve folks who are uninsured and underinsured.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

In my experience this doctor takes a holistic, collaborative and conversational approach to care. During every visit I have had with her, she has faced me, made eye contact with me, and carried on a real conversation rather than firing questions at me from a computer. One time when I had a question she drew me a diagram on a piece of paper to show me what she was talking about. It helped me understand her answer so much better. It was a small thing, but it meant a lot for her to take the explanation slowly and help me visualize it. I have felt very comfortable and respected with this provider, and I have never felt rushed or like there was a time limit on my visit (I’m sure there was, but it was never made apparent to me).

Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff, if applicable.

I’ve found nurses and receptionists to be very friendly and helpful. I’ve discussed medical issues with nurses over the phone a few times and got the information and advice I needed. I didn’t feel rushed.

What identities do you have?    

White, cis-female using she/her pronouns, heterosexual, early 30s.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

They serve folks who are un-insured or under-insured. Metro’s website states they provide expertise in LGBT comprehensive care, HIV care, behavioral health, holistic and integrated care, geriatrics, women’s health, maternity care. This doctor is white and female, the practice is a non-profit, and according to the website some of the doctors are affiliated with Forbes Regional Hospital and UPMC Shadyside.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

Parking is free and the building is accessible by public transit. The office is a few floors up and there is an elevator.

Darrell Philips, LCSW, MBA

12 Dec

Darrell Phillips, LCSW, MBA         

Psychological & Counseling Center, Inc.,

1824 Murray Avenue, Suite 304

Pittsburgh, PA 15217

412.327.2189

phillipscounseling@gmail.com

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Therapy/counseling.

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes! Yes! Darrell is a wonderful therapist. He is empathetic, transparent, good at setting and respecting boundaries, LGBTQQIA-aware (he identifies as a gay male, himself), as well as sensitive to issues of social justice. He also is knowledgeable about and practices multiple psychotherapeutic modalities, from psychodynamic psychotherapy to cognitive-behavioral therapy, etc., so he can tailor his methods to the changing needs of his client. I have experienced this in my sessions with him. He also informs the client of what method he’s using and what diagnosis he’s treating, and empowers them to learn from him as well as choose the focus of the sessions.

When did you last see this provider?

0-5 months ago.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

It is very easy to make appointments with Darrell. He responds promptly and has a lot of availability–including evenings.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

Yes. He accepts my insurance, which is UPMC, and does not charge a co-pay. I’m not sure what other insurance he accepts. There was a period when I was insecure about whether I’d have health insurance, and he told me not to worry about it financially, and that my continued care was the most important thing, so I assume he would be open to a sliding scale rate or a payment plan, but I’m not sure.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

My experience with this provider has been extremely positive. I have always felt respected, comfortable, and validated with Darrell. I am a white cis woman in my late 20s whose sexual orientation is fluid. Darrell has been great at identifying and navigating the intersections and disparities between the different aspects of our respective identities, and using these qualities as productive therapeutic tools. I feel comfortable asking any question that arises, as well.

What identities do you have?    

White, fluid sexual orientation, late 20s, tall and slim, cis woman, female, able-bodied, middle-class.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

LGBTQ-friendly, experienced working with trauma/sexual assault survivors, trained in social work and is socially-conscious (regarding race, class, etc.) Darrell is a black gay cis man in his late 40s and is very open with me about his own struggles as well as privilege resulting from these identities.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

Darrell’s office is wheelchair accessible via elevator. I believe there’s braille on the elevator signage. I don’t know about parking–I take the bus and the office is in Squirrel Hill. The office is very accessible via public transportation. He has another office in Oakland which is also accessible via public transportation. I believe it is wheelchair accessible. Neither office building has gender-neutral restrooms, though. I’m not sure about interpreters. It seems that all signage is in English only, as well.

UPMC Gastroenterology/Dr. Savreet Sarkaria

12 Dec

UMPC- Gastroenterology           

Dr. Savreet Sarkaria

Shadyside Medical Building

5200 Centre Ave.

Suite 409

Pittsburgh, PA 15232

(412) 623-3105

 

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Gastroenterology.

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes.

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago.

Why did/do you see this provider?         

 Chrone’s screening.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

It took two months to get in.

Was/is the provider affordable?              

They took my insurance.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

She was open minded. She asked lots of questions and shared information freely. She was really open to my thoughts and experiences.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

They were all great.

What identities do you have?    

White, cis, woman, english speaking.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

Talks openly about being Indian American and a woman.

Metro Family Practice/Dr. Katherine Homrok

12 Dec

Dr. Katherine Homrok

Metro Family Practice

Braddock Ave.

Next to Edgewood Town Center

412-247-2310

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Family Practice.

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes.

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago.

Why did/do you see this provider?         

 Primary care.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

It may take a few days to get an appointment after the initial one (which may take longer).

Was/is the provider affordable?              

They accepted my insurances – I had Highmark before… UPMC now.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

I feel listened to at appointments.  I appreciate that Dr. Homrok has sent me to other good doctors if she does not know the answers.

I felt like my questions and concerns were listened to and addressed as thoroughly as possible.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

The method of entry and support is sometimes confusing (color teams for doctors, but not always used). The staff is no different that other support staff I have encountered.  Good days and bad days depending on how busy it is.  (I used to work in a medical office, so I am not too hard on staff for bad days – the job is tough).

What identities do you have?    

White, 40-year old, employed, queer woman.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

LGBTQ-friendly is all I have seen/heard.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

It is close to the busway. Wheelchair accessible. Plenty of free parking. Gender-neutral bathroom.

UPMC Mercy Voice Center/Dr. Libby J. Smith

12 Dec

Dr. Libby J. Smith DO

UPMC Mercy Voice Center

University Ear, Nose & Throat Specialists — Mercy Hospital

Building D, Suite 2100

1400 Locust Street

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

412-232-3687

What type of medicine does the provider practice?        

Otolaryngology (Ear, Nose, Throat) Specific to Voice Issues

Would you recommend this provider to others?              

 Yes, absolutely.

When was your last visit with the provider          

0-5 months ago.

Why did/do you see this provider?         

 Breathing, speaking, swallowing issues due to unilateral vocal fold paralysis after nerve damage from thyroid cancer surgery.

What was/is your experience making an appointment with this provider?           

My surgeon made the first appointment and other appointments are kind of hard to make unless you make them at the office because UPMC’s system often redirects people to the call center and the call center is really confused about ENTs because there are so many sub specialties. Best ways to get an appointment- message the office through the myupmc.com portal, have your doctor call, or make an appt in person

Was/is the provider affordable?              

UPMC for You Medicaid has me covered but proceed with caution due to all of the feuding.

Please describe your experience with the provider.       

I had to have multiple tests done that were either really uncomfortable or painful including a scope through my nose and down my throat and 2 EMGs where wires were stuck in my neck to test nerve function. Dr. Smith is very direct which I REALLY appreciate. Some doctors had been downplaying the severity of this complication- assuring me everything was fine (when none of it is) and she is just straight up honest. Your nerve doesn’t work and there is only a 5% chance it ever will again.

Even though she is direct she is still really kind and caring. She has to either be family (LGBTQ) or have loved ones who are. She has been kind about trans stuff (though she randomly started using different pronouns at my last visit, but I think it’s because staff was switching them around during my last EMG and that sucked). She lets me ask a million questions and she really knows her stuff. She also gave me a bunch of options and really seemed to believe that my choices were important and the best for me to make.

TL;DR: Direct, honest, caring, intelligent, and helpful with really uncomfortable testing procedures.

 Please describe your experience with the provider’s support staff (if applicable).            

There are a lot of residents, students, and researchers in this place so there are often a LOT of people in the room at times which can be intimidating. I like being part of teaching and research because I am a weird person with a complicated case and I hope it will help future people with complicated struggles. But, it can be tough when there are more people and more possibilities for them to mess everything up.

One of her residents was the first doctor to ever ask my preferred pronouns, the nursing staff is SO KIND and comforting. The front desk staff is nice (but usually busy it’s a busy office.)

What identities do you have?    

Trans (read as different genders all the time), Queer, DFAB, disabled and unable to work, mid-30s, chubby, poor, white, very small support system.

What can you share about this provider’s identities and/or the practice’s affiliations that may be important to their clients?               

They have a transgender specific vocal and respiratory therapist and while I never really wanted vocal coaching for trans issues, they have scheduled me with her which is nice; they know what trans people are but I’m not sure how educated the staff is on the whole aside from being nice, people with a LOT of different medical issues come there and a variety of ages and abilities       White, female, DO, maybe lgbtq- knowledgeable about trans/queer stuff, most of the staff was white people though.

What did you observe or experience about the accessibility of the practice?       

 Mercy hospital has free parking for the 1st 3 hours, most doors, including many restroom doors, are sensor operated and automatic, elevators are accessible, it is a religious hospital but no one has confronted me with anything religious aside from there being some jesus pics in the hallway, the doors to the voice center office are NOT automatic unfortunately, it is not a super far walk from the garage elevator, to the hallway, to the elevator in the hospital, to the office.

Mercy hospital is on Forbes ave bus lines.

I am not sure about language, Deaf/Hoh accessibility.