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Podiatrist comes by homes all around RR

Dr. Adam Cornejo is The Toe Doc. Photo by Amy Byres.

RIO RANCHO, N.M. — The Toe Doc is making house calls to Rio Rancho.

Dr. Adam Cornejo is a podiatry specialist who exclusively makes house calls.

He began his business in July 2018; he believed it was important to establish a practice in a place he grew up.

Through business development, Cornejo opted out of paying rent for an office and decided to make house calls to patients.

“(I) had an office, but most people — when I was marketing and reaching out — they were asking if I could go to their homes, to assisted-living homes, nursing homes, senior-living homes, those types of places,” he said.

A majority of Cornejo’s business serves the elderly community with toenail maintenance, he said.

“It’s not just the elderly I’m serving; it can be anyone,” Cornejo said.

He is able to provide fungal toenail treatment, toenail care, diabetic foot care, ingrown-toenail treatment, general consultation for infection and much more, Cornejo said.

Making house calls can be therapeutic for patients, he said.

Through the pandemic, many assisted-living and retirement homes have not allowed visitors. Psychological disparities come with having a lack of human contact, Cornejo said.

“I feel like I’m the gatekeeper with the family members, like with the children, to let them know things like, ‘Your mom is doing OK. She’s eating good. She might need a new pair of slippers; hers are wearing down,'” he said. “I feel like most times, it’s giving people reassurance that it’s going to be OK, or if it’s not, here’s what I think we need to do, and I think people appreciate that.”

Over the years, The Toe Doc has grown from treating three patients in its first month to treating 120 patients in a month, Cornejo said.

About 20-30 percent of Cornejo’s clientele is in Rio Rancho, he said.

“I’m a doctor that will come to your house within 24 hours, if not the same day from when you called me. And I think a lot of people are shocked by that because people have told me their wait times have been months, to half a year, and even more than that to see a doctor. Which we know is appalling,” Cornejo said.

He said there are only a handful of podiatry specialists in the Rio Rancho area, and making house calls is rare.

The Toe Doc does not accept insurance but practices a transparent cost model.

Cornejo does not charge a visit fee and bundles the cost of the requested services into one transparent value that is agreed upon before service, he said.

Cornejo learned this transparent cost model from his mentor, Dr. Andru Zeller, who owns a non-profit medical clinic called Simply Salud.

“I always joke with my friends, if you were to get, like a steroid injection in your foot, I always ask my friends ‘Do you know what that would cost for the syringe, the needle and the medicine they are about to inject?’ Everybody always guesses high. The crazy truth of it is that it’s $1.50; that’s just what the supplies are,” he said.

Prices range from $60 for toenail care, to ingrown toenail removal for $140 to $160, according to The Toe Doc website.

For more information, visit thetoedoc.com or call 596-1852.

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