In the Media

Island House Doctor

Article from: The Suffolk Times |
Article date: August 31, 2009

  • Owner: Dr. Daniel Ferrara
  • Year established: 2008
  • Location: 88 Arkay Drive, Hauppauge
  • Phone: 631-514-7578
  • Number of employees: 15

Island House Doctor provides elderly patients with modern, oncall medical care throughout Nassau and Suffolk counties. Boardcertified physicians, nurse practitioners and physician assistants diagnose and treat patients for a wide range of illnesses in the comfort and convenience of the patients’ own homes.

The practice offers a broad range of services such as urgent care for both acute problems and chronic disease management, including high blood pressure, diabetes, irregular hearts, emphysema, dementia, high cholesterol, kidney insufficiency and chronic pain. House call services also can include patient history and physical examinations, routine visits and sick calls, spirometry and pulse oximetry, anticoagulant management, immunizations including flu shots, and prescription renewals.

Island House Doctor also offers a wide range of lab services that can be performed in a patient’s home, eliminating the inconvenience of separate lab or hospital visits. These services include urine analysis, blood tests, diabetes and blood sugar tests and liver testing, among others. Also available are diagnostic tests such as ultrasound/ Dopplers, X-rays, echocardiograms, EKGs, Holter monitors, defibrillator evaluations and pulmonary function testing.

Island House Doctor offers “traditional house calls with modern conveniences,” according to Carmen Marmo-Savinetti, vice president of marketing and community relations. Same-day appointments are available for qualified patients.

Hours are Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, visit


Doctor house calls making a comeback

Article from: The Smithtown News | Article date: December 25, 2008 | Author: Chris Vaccaro

Homebound Medical Care | In Home Diagnostic Testing | In Home Wound Care | Suffolk County
What's old is new again: Nurses Theresa Nicosia and Danielle Ferrara
and Dr. Daniel Ferrara are helping bring back medical house calls.

House calls by family doctors had become a thing of the past, a service of bygone local practitioners, but like a retro outfit they have come back in style in Smithtown.

Island Medical House Doctor, of Necsonset, offers direct in-home medical service from a group of experienced, board-certified physicians and nurse practitioners.

They have a broad range of services including urgent care for acute medical problems, chronic disease management, wound care, renal failure, diabetes, Parkinson's Disease and many other issues.

"We go through a lot of diagnostic testing right in the home," said Carmen Marmo-Savinetti, vice president of marketing and community relations for Island Medical. "That saves time. We're able to have full control of the patient and if they need another specialty we'll put them in touch with the right people."

The company, which uses the slogan "traditional house calls with modern convenience," is based at 88 Arkay Drive in Hauppauge and has two primary doctors and three nurse practitioners.

Dr. Daniel Ferrara and Dr. Lawrence Salob lead the team that is helping to improve patient outcomes, present peace of mind to patients and caregivers and prevent unnecessary hospitalization. Dr. Ferrara purchased Premier House Call Services in July 2008 from Dr. Samuel Smith.

"This is certainly not a common thing," Dr. Ferrara said. "Very few physicians go into the home. It takes a special kind of person who likes to do house calls. You get into the home and you really get to know the patient better."

Thanks to modern technology and advancements in medical equipment, Island Medical offers lab services, x-rays, holter monitoring, echocardiograms and ultrasound testing all in the home.

Mobilerad, a medical supply company based in Port Jefferson, created most of the machines used in the home.

"They put the images [from tests] on the internet and I can have the image at home or at the office within two hours," Dr. Ferrara said.

Dr. Ferrara said the main people seeking his assistance are those who are extremely inconvenienced.

"There are a lot of people that we see that are unable to walk physically to get to the doctor's office," he said.

Island Medical is a 24/7 operation and can provide urgent care if necessary. Dr. Ferrara said they do not provide emergency service like an EMT or fire department's ambulance service, however.

For more information about the house call program, call 631-724-9394.


Homebound patients benefit from bedside treatment, and chats

Article from: The Suffolk Times | Article date: February 26, 2009 | Author: Julie Lane

Homebound Medical Care | In Home Diagnostic Testing | In Home Wound Care | Suffolk County
Dr. Daniel Ferrara and physician's assistant Louise Cardellina check
on a patient in her Cutchogue home.

Stethoscope, syringe and travel bag.

All are required equipment for doctors at Island Medical House Doctor, which has taken to sending physicians on house calls throughout the North Fork.

The practice of house calls began to fade about a century ago, but House Doctor providers are bringing it back, primarily seeing chronically ill homebound patients who can't easily get themselves to doctors' offices and medical centers.

The company is the brainchild of Dr. Daniel Ferrara, who bought a traditional medical practice in Smithtown last July. Despite skyrocketing gasoline prices, he saw the need for a service to bring medical care to patients who would otherwise go unserved or rely on emergency rooms.

"We're situated pretty well to do this," Dr. Ferrara said, explaining how he tries to cluster appointments by area to make the best use of each provider's time. "I can't see why we didn't do it sooner."

It's not only convenient for patients, but economical for society, he said. Because doctors come to the house, family members don't have to take time from work, often losing pay, to transport their relatives to appointments, which keeps their employers happy, Dr. Ferrara said.

Island Medical House Doctor has a staff of six doctors, nurse practitioners and physicians' assistants, most of whom prefer being on the road. Another four or five work in the Smithtown central office, but are available to go on the road if needed. All medical records are electronic and can be accessed on the scene.

"They have a passion for it," said Carmen Marmo-Savinetti, a company spokeswoman, referring to the staff who makes house calls.

Loneliness is a factor for many homebound patients, Ms. Marmo-Savinetti noted. That's why a doctor's home visit might take 40 minutes to an hour if the patient wants to talk. A house doctor is likely to see six to eight patients a day, compared with the 30 to 40 patients a doctor might typically juggle in an office setting on an average day.

It's also not unusual for the service providers to arrive with milk or food, Dr. Ferrara said. They're going to the home anyway, he said, so it's a quick stop to bring the patient items he or she needs.

While the doctors do provide urgent care treatment for acute problems, most patients have chronic illnesses and must be cleared by insurers for the service. Patients need not be totally bed-bound, Dr. Ferrara said, but they do need to prove that getting out to see a doctor on a regular basis is difficult.

Patient co-pays are the same as they would be for an office visit. Insurers pay the practice 10 to 15 percent more for home-based services than for those rendered in the office.

What sets these house call physicians apart from their predecessors, who arrived with only their little black bags, is the technology they're able to bring to the bedside. Doctors can perform EKG's and lab tests in the home and can access X-ray films via computer.

The doctors also interact with human services agencies to address various aspects of a patient's needs, from staff at the Suffolk County Office of the Aging to a network of providers who render physical therapy, speech therapy, podiatry, dentistry and wound care. They also help make arrangements for visiting nurses, home health aides, social workers and other general assistance patients might need.

The staff serves about 75 patients on a regular basis in Riverhead and Southold, many of whom are permanently homebound, but some of whom need home medical attention only temporarily.

If there's one drawback, Dr. Ferrara said, it's that very few specialists are available to see homebound patients. As he continues to market his services to senior groups throughout the county, he seeks out more specialists willing to support home services.

A recent study of a Duke University program serving homebound patients revealed that doctors making house calls reduced hospital admissions by 68 percent and cut emergency room visits by 41 percent.

Island Medical House Doctor can be reached at 631-514-7578.