Your Visit with Dr. Sims

TeleHealth Appointments

To better serve our patients during the spread of COVID-19, we are offering telehealth appointments to new and existing patients. A telehealth appointment is a virtual “at home health visit” conducted through phone or video call. If you have a video visit scheduled,  click here.


For voice evaluations, Dr. Sims, the laryngologist prefers to be thorough and to spend as much time with his patients as is required. To help with this goal, we ask that you arrive at least 20 minutes prior to your appointment in order to complete the necessary patient intake forms or download from this website and arrive with them already completed. We also ask that you make sure that if required, you have a referral for both your visit and for a scope exam. The specific CPT code is 31579.

Please Note: Do not return completed forms via internet or fax, as this violates federal HIPAA privacy laws, which were created to protect you.

On the same day as your appointment with Dr. Sims, you will be scheduled for a voice evaluation with our Speech Pathologist. For this appointment, we also ask that you make sure that, if required, you have a referral for both your evaluation and for any therapy recommended. The specific CPT codes are 92524, 92520, and 92507. For some insurance carriers, we must submit the evaluation for authorization before we are able to start therapy. Please check your coverage in advance so that you will be aware of any delays caused by this requirement.

If English is not your primary language, it is helpful if you bring someone with you to help you converse. The University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System provides interpreters for many languages. However, it is most helpful if you notify us of the need for such services when you make the appointment.

You must present a photo ID, as well as your insurance card. In the case of a minor, the parent or guardian will provide his or hers.

What to Bring

To make the most of your first appointment, please bring all available and relevant medical records. This includes: copies of your medical notes from other practitioners as well as any lab results, x-ray reports, actual x-rays and scans, and audiograms that have been completed. Also, please bring all available and relevant records from any previous voice therapy you may have had. If you are participating in singing lessons or voice/ acting coaching, a brief note from your teacher(s) about current status is also helpful. If you have seen an ear, nose, and throat doctor outside UIC, please bring records from these visits as well.

Please bring the contact information for all the health care providers you currently see, so that we can inform them of our findings, or discuss your treatment if necessary.

You will need to send your health care providers a Records Release Authorization to have copies of your records sent directly to us. We can fax you a copy of the form, or you can download it here. In addition, please bring a complete list of the nutritional supplements and medications you take. Our patients are not required to change into exam gowns or disrobe for any reason.

All of our diagnostic and therapeutic services are minimally invasive. Tight fitting clothing worn around the neck will limit our ability to serve you. Please wear comfortable clothing for your evaluation and therapy sessions. To fully evaluate your voice, we will look at your posture, respiration, and assess your body mechanics as you use your voice. For these things, we may ask you to move, sit, lie down, or otherwise demonstrate how you use your voice in a variety of situations. Computerized measurements of various aspects of your voice may be taken for later comparison. These measurements are not invasive. You may feel more comfortable wearing pants. While it is not necessary, we may offer scrub shirts and/or pants for you to change into. Or, you are welcome to bring your own change of clothes.

After the evaluation is completed, you will receive information about how to care for your voice. This information will be personalized for your vocal needs. You will also receive an outline of your therapy plan and be given an opportunity to ask questions.

Your Therapy Visits

As for the evaluation, we ask you to dress comfortably and in a way that allows movement. Usually, a course of voice therapy requires between 4 and 8 visits. We structure the timing of these visits to allow you time to incorporate new voice habits into your daily routine.

Voice therapy requires commitment to attend therapy sessions and change some behaviors as they pertain to your voice. You will be given certain exercises to do at home, at work, or socially. Exercises will be designed with your specific needs in mind and in a way that they will interrupt your routine as little as possible. In some cases, you may be asked to bring family members or other individuals important to your voice to therapy appointments.

Please note that any patient under the age of 18 must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to all evaluation and therapy visits.

Privacy Policy

It is your right to choose not to have your records or any information about your visit shared with anyone, including referring practitioners. Please notify us if you do not want your referring providers contacted by our office. If you want us to work in cooperation with other providers, you will first be asked to sign a release of information.

Our practice protects oral, written and electronic health information throughout the office. We will not sell your health information to anyone. We have many internal policies and procedures designed to control and protect the internal privacy and security of your health information. We train all of our employees to protect your information through internal policies and procedures, which are evaluated and updated for compliance with applicable law.

Cancellation Policy

Because we do not double-book appointments, and schedule each patient ample time with Dr. Sims, we may charge for missed appointments and those not cancelled with adequate notice.

New patients are asked to give 48 (business) hours’ notice; established patients may be charged for all appointments not cancelled with 24 (business) hours. Therefore, for Monday appointments, a cancellation on Friday (before the time of the appointment on Monday) is requested to avoid potential.

Furthermore, we reserve the right to charge full consultation fees for no-shows and for those cancellations provided with less than 2 hours’ notice.

New patients who cancel or reschedule with less than 48 hours may be asked to provide us with a credit card deposit in order to reschedule the consultation (this is a refundable deposit only in the event that adequate cancellation notice is given).

A detailed cancellation policy and fees will be provided at the initial visit, and can be requested at any time.

Neither Dr. H. Steven Sims, the Chicago Institute for Voice Care, or the University of Illinois Hospital and Health Sciences System is engaged in the process of advising patients through the material contained in this web site. The information contained herein is strictly for informational purposes only..