Berkeley Family Practice


Berkeley Family Practice 2636 Telegraph Av Berkeley CA 841-1647

Archived Q&A and Reviews

March 2010


Re: GP in Berkeley area needed
I have Anthem BC HMO and was assigned to Timothy Fitzer, 510-841-1647. He's on Telegraph across from Andronicos. I really like his manner and the efficiency of his office staff. When I needed to see a doctor for an urgent problem, I saw one of his colleagues and liked her a lot, too. I feel lucky--after my long-time doctor stopped taking health insurance, I was bounced around from one PCP to another for years. Dr. Fitzer told me he's been taking ABMG patients for years and has no plans to stop. Francesca

April 2008

Does anyone have any recent experience with Berkely Family Practice / Urgent Care (on Telegraph across from Andronicos), especially Dr. Jacinto?

A friend of mine went in to see Dr. Jacintho to extend his predisone prescription by two-20mg pills (so that he could taper the dosage-it's dangerous to go from 40mg one day to zero mg the next). He had called the day before and they told him to ''email'' so he emailed. The email system said he would receive an answer within 8hrs, he hadn't received anything in 24hr (and it was time to take another pill!) so we went in just after lunch to pick up the prescription for two pills to safely taper his dosage. We were put off over and over again, dealing first with the receptionist then the med. assistant, waiting two hours (with Dr. Jacintho right there inthe office-sometimes walking within feet of where we were standing)and finally told to leave and go back home to the computer and email again and then he would call in the prescription (for TWO pills). My friend did and the pharmacy still didn't have the prescription by 4:30 and when he called to ask them to call the pharmacy again, they said, ''we need more time''. Finally, at about 5:30, the prescription was ready...31 hrs after the first request. But the worst was then my friend received a long letter from Dr. Jacintho saying how busy he was (15 emails/day!) and that we should be more understanding of that. If he (or his staff) had taken a fraction of the time it took to write that ''complaint'' to his patient and instead wrote out the two pill prescription, there would have been no risking his patient's health or wasting their time.

May 2004

Does anyone have any recent experience with Berkeley Family Practice or any of the doctors there (Thomas Stern et al)?

I have been a patient at Berkeley Family Practice for many years, especially Dr. Stern. He has cut back on his hours, so I don't always see him any more, only when I can make an appointment with advance notice. However, I am always pleased with him, his take action approach, as well as other doctors I have seen there (lately Dr. Jacinto, who also has a take action approach). I'm not as pleased with the office staff, especially over the phone, but so far I'm overlooking this. They have evening hours some days, which I consider a godsend. Overall, I recommend this practice.

July 2002

My medical group (Hill Physicians) just switched me to Jessica Fielden. I know nothing about her but I've been looking for a new doctor anyway, so if she's good I'll just stick with her. Can anyone tell me about her or anyone else in her practice? Thanks. Deborah

I was seeing Dr. Fielden until I had to switch medical groups due to an insurance change in order to continue seeing my OB who is in the Alta Bates group.

She's a pretty down-to-earth, straightforward sort of person who has taken a pro-active stance on managing my thyroid condition. When I arrived as a new patient, she double-checked my test results to see exactly where I fall in the range of normal vs. abnormal results to make sure that my medication dosage is appropriate.

I'm looking forward to switching back to Hill Physicians after the birth of my baby, so that we can continue to see her. Dr. Fielden is a Family Practice doctor, and works out of the 2636 Telegraph Ave, office. 510-841-1647.

I'm also very happy with the Nurse-Practitioner in their office, Deborah Spitz, who also has a friendly, down-to-earth and approachable manner, while also being professional and knowledgeable.

The downside to this practice, IMHO, is the office staff, who often seem rushed, or swamped with work and not particularly friendly in manner when one is checking in or out. -- Beth

One I would NOT recommend is the one I have : Jessica Fielden. I found her to be difficult to work with as her appointments ran consistently a half hour behind and she didn't seem to want to prescribe anything. Result, I had to buy OTC medicine that wasn't strong enough and ended up having to go see a speacilist not covered by HealthNet to really treat my symptoms. Caroline

I would highly recommend Berkeley Family Practice. They have female physicians and female nurse practitioners and LONG hours - evenings and Saturdays. I especially like all their female staff - Dr. Jessica Fielden and Practitioners Debra Spitz and Patricia Sandoval. The practice is headed up by Dr. Thomas Stern - very good too. Cassandra