Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Doctor Review: Ramapo Valley OB/GYN (Pomona, NY)

Shame on me! Did I never post a review of Ramapo Valley OB/GYN? You may know by now how fickle (er... picky) I am when choosing doctors, so I'm astounded I haven't chronicled my Rockland OB search for you the way I did when I was in Queens!

Well--surprise surprise--I did have my reservations about Ramapo Valley OB/GYN when I first started seeing them back in August. I had my 8-week prenatal appointment with the practice's only male doctor, Dr. Amnon Fein, and he rubbed me the wrong way (Figuratively. Eewwww.) He made some off-putting small talk about my age and loudly reprimanded Andrew for touching the door handle (I'm not a fan of strangers shouting at my son for stupid reasons.) He also didn't ask me my medical history at that appointment and later barked angrily at me when I called the emergency line during a weekend with bad stomach pain, which, busy doctor or not, made me think less of him.

Needless to say, I made sure that all of my appointments after the first were made with the other doctors at the practice, Dr. Michele Batista, Dr. Suzanne Flapan, and Dr. Carrie Panoff--and am I glad for that! I've seen each one of these women for appointments since August and they are really just superb. They are sweet and thorough and have not made any discouraging comments about my steadily-creeping-up weight (hurrah!) I was actually really touched when, at my last appointment, Dr. Flapan genuinely smiled when she located my little one's heartbeat with the doppler monitor--you can just tell she really enjoys her job. (Check out their linked names above for their bios on the practice's website.)

Also awesome: They deliver at Good Samaritan hospital, which is my preference. The office staff is nice and I've waited 10-15 minutes for all but maybe two of my appointments. An ultrasound tech comes right to the office so you can combine ultrasound and standard appointments. And there is also a Quest diagnostics located just across the parking lot for any test you need done.

The negatives: Sometimes there is very little parking to be found (its a hopping little medical plaza!) and I find their office hours impossible to remember. Also, they made me do some take-home blood kit where I had to prick own my finger--not cool! With my first pregnancy, I had this test done by a technician at Quest but Ramapo OB/GYN insisted on the take-home. Maybe its standard to do a take-home test now, but my fingers were not happy with my hack job!

So, overall I'm pleased for now with Ramapo OB/GYN and PRAYING that Dr. Batista, Flapan or Panoff will be on-call to deliver the baby this Spring! Here's the practice info if you're interested in giving them a go yourself. Good luck ladies!

Ramapo Valley OB/GYN
974 Route 45, Suite 100 (first floor; door is on the left)
Pomona, NY 10970
T: 845-354-1113
Hours: Mon 9-4 Tues 1-8 Wed 10-6 Thu closed Fri 9-4

They also have a Monroe office:
Suite 17 Shoprite Plaza
Monroe, NY 10950
T: 845-782-9449
Hours: Mon 9-4 Tues 1-8 Wed 10-4 Thu closed Fri 9-4


  1. Huh - Mommy had to do the tak-home finger prick test with 2+ years ago me, which she thought was totally weird, but with Lulu it was done in-office. It must just depend on the group!

    It sounds like you're pretty set, but Mommy could not have been more happy with Dr. Dicker/Valley Hospital should you ever want to switch.

    Mommy's meeting some other moms and kids for a stroller walk at the Palisades Center this Friday morning - would you be interested in joining us?

  2. I've heard amazing things about Valley Hospital and the doctors who deliver there! If I ever do switch, I will definitely set up an appointment with Dr. Dicker.

    And I'd love to go for a mall stroll on Friday! Where and when are you meeting (should I send you an email?)

  3. I found your blog through google searching Dr. Charnes. Do you recommend using her for a first time pregnancy?
    Wish you a healthy, easy, happy, and safe pregnancy!!!

  4. I definitely would recommend Dr. Charnes! She may not come across at first as "warm and fuzzy," but she really is very nice, knowledgeable, and incredibly thorough (and I have found knowledge & thoroughness to be lacking in so many doctors!)

    Dr. Kanarek at the office is great too and you will meet him during one of your visits just in case he is on-call when you deliver. He was actually on-call during most of my delivery and broke my water and circumcised my son the following day. Neither he nor Dr. Charnes delivered Andrew though--a wonderful OB I had never met was on-call and did a great job.

    A happy & healthy pregnancy to you too! Please let me know what you think of Dr. Charnes!

  5. An update from the above Anonymous poster:
    thank you Lisa. I had my visit with Dr. Charnes, and she is wonderful! I found her to be very kind and knowledgeable.
    Looking forward to meeting Dr. Kanarek as well.

  6. I would rate ramapo valley obgyn as by far the most amazing group of docors! I had my son april 7th2012, i had a slow leak in my bag that dr panoff found right away. The office squeezed me in as soon as i called, that evening i was admitted directly to the hospital. DR Flapan was on call that evening and she was amazing, i was given epidural before i even felt alittle of that terrible pain we all hear about, the epidural was on a drip and never ran out! At 2am my sons heartbeat dropped and dr flanpan and her wonderful team of nurses came in and they saved my son from distress. At 3:15am my son was born, i felt nothing while pushing, and i wasnt cut nor did i tear so recovery was fast! I recommend them to everyone, and FYI i was high risk due to PCOS and PKD!!!!

  7. I would like to respond to the negative comments about Dr Fein. For over 20 years I have made all my regular appointments with him and never had a problem. He delivered both my children before he was in the practice with the Drs mentioned above - his previous partner retired. You may not have liked him; however, it may be simply that he is not "warm and fuzzy" (see another comment above).He is a fine knowledgable doctor that anyone should be glad to have in the delivery room when they are delivering a child. Cathy Kant

  8. i have been using Dr. fein since 1987.He delivered nine of my babies.He is the nicest warmest Dr.I have met.I never ever had any problem not with or the rest of his staff.I highly recommend this wonderful office!!!!!.

  9. Thank you all for your continued comments! I've had wonderful experiences at Ramapo Valley and I am glad you all have too. I am also glad to read some of the positive experiences others have had with Dr. Fein. While he isn't my first pick at the practice, he is obviously very well-respected by many. (Who knows, I may have caught him on an off day or two.) The practice is great, though, so its worth meeting each of the doctors there and deciding who is best for you.

  10. Accidentally came across these posts. Dr. Fein and his former partner Dr. Price delivered my son many years ago. They never performed an ultrasound other than the 20 week one. They never did an internal after the very first one. As a result, they had no idea my baby was facing the wrong way and was over 11 pounds. I was forced into a very long labor (overdue by one week), delivered without a c-section and both my son and I almost died. The whole long labor Dr. Price complained about his back pain and Dr. Fein complained because he was supposed to be on vacation. My son's head, when he finally came out, was so "coned" that a specialist pediatric neurologist was called in to look at him. Dr. Price retired because he was afraid of a malpractice suit, and Dr. Fein should have retired as well. I urge anyone to not use Dr. Fein. I have no idea about the other doctors now in practice with him, but under no circumstance should anyone use Dr. Fein. Oh and did I mention that my coccyx bone was broken during the delivery? Go elsewhere!

  11. Every day with dr Fein is an "OFF DAY" He is a miserable, nasty, sarcastic human being.

  12. My goodness, anonymous from August 21st, I am so sorry you had such a horrible experience! I hope that you and your son do not have any lingering problems from such a traumatic birth experience. It can be very alarming when a doctor starts complaining to a patient about non-medical issues -- vacation, his former partner's reasons for leaving, etc. It gives an impression that they aren't paying complete attention to their job. This kind of carelessness may then result in a life or death mistake for a patient.

    Please continue the discussion here! It is very helpful for us all to hear the experiences, both good and bad, of others so that we can make an informed decision when choosing our healthcare providers.

  13. They billed my insurance for 2 office visits for the same day. Needless to say my insurance paid for part of the claim. Leaving me with a hefty bill.

    I spoke with both the billing manager Susan LoPiccolo and Dr. Carrie Panoff. Asking them to correct their billing and they refused to do so. They also refused to lower the bill to attempt to rectify the situation. They have no regard for their patients financial standpoint. I do believe all should be paid for their services but in this case they were paid once by the insurance company and once by me. Making it so they were paid twice..

    Brace yourself for a denied claim as well as a hefty bill while going to this medical facility.

    The worst part is.. I went to this office with my records from a previous office. As we all know when doing so you sit and talk about everything then go in for an exam, which only took about 2 minutes with Etana Berkowitz.

    As for Personality and Friendliness ratings. No they weren't to pleasant and friendly at this office. It was very busy. It appeared as herding cattle. Unfortunately, If you are looking for an office with a personal relationship between you and doctor I don't believe this is the right place.