Spruce’s Secure Phone System Is a “Secret Weapon”

Meet NYC Retina

Dr. Fesitmann who uses Spruce's secure phone system
Dr. Feistmann, founder of NYC Retina

NYC Retina is an ophthalmology practice that specializes in retinal surgery. With two locations in New York, the practice provides a highly focused and competitive service. When they first opened, they relied on referrals to build their patient base. As competition has increased, however, they’ve had to stand out by providing exceptional care and access to patients in order to continue their growth. It is essential for patients who are dealing with complicated and serious retinal issues to be able to reach NYC Retina at all times. The practice requires a secure phone system that seamlessly supports VoIP, secure messaging, and internal communication features so that they are able to achieve this high standard.


When Dr. Feistmann opened NYC Retina ten years ago, he employed one person to answer the phones during the day and gave out his personal cell for after-hours care. He also had a costly after-hours answering service. As the practice grew, staff members often answered questions for the same patients with no way to track or monitor the overlapping advice. Dr. Feistmann soon determined that this was not good enough for the type of service that he wanted to provide his patients or his staff members. Dr. Feistmann heard about Spruce from a colleague, who recommended that he make the switch. Although he was initially nervous about replacing the phone system, Dr. Feistmann encouraged his team to do so and they have never looked back.

“Spruce is built for doctors’ offices. It does exactly what we want, and it just works. Even the small things, Spruce pays attention to — paging each other, posting notes, etc. — it saves us tons of time and allows us to deliver a better product and to communicate better with our patients.”

– Dr. Jonathan Feistmann, MD


Comprehensive and Secure Phone System

NYC Retina implemented Spruce’s full secure phone system. By combining calls on Spruce’s VoIP phones with patient and internal messaging, they have streamlined communication, improved efficiency, and driven growth in their practice. Dr. Feistmann describes the transition to Spruce: “It requires a little time to make sure it’s really perfect, but you have to make that commitment. I made a bet that it would be worth it, and I totally won that bet. It was 100% worth it. The more we use it, the happier people are.”

Unified Patient Messaging

The staff says it best:

“We used to spend hours on the phone — we had three people answering them at once — but when patients realized they could text, they were more than happy to do so and were willing to wait for a text back instead of calling. That really helped our flow.” – Althea (Practice Manager)

“The whole office sees every message chain, and that’s the beauty of Spruce. Everyone is over the moon about it, because Employee A can answer one question, Employee B another, and me a third. It’s a magical experience for patients, and we can see what’s going on without texting each other.” – Dr. Feistmann

We get compliments from patients all the time who say, ‘I could have dealt with this problem all night, and I was so scared. You literally answered my question in two seconds, and I didn’t have to worry about it.’ That’s probably one of the best things you can hear.”

-Althea (Practice Manager)

Benefits to NYC Retina

Reliable Communication

When NYC Retina lost power, Althea relied on Spruce’s cloud-based flexibility: “I was able to transfer all of my calls to our satellite locations so I didn’t have to worry about not answering. If patients had a question, I could communicate on Spruce. Crisis averted.”

Patient-First Technology

Spruce helps NYC Retina focus on important clinical matters, such as urgent patient requests and referrals, by allowing them to simplify administrative tasks. Customer service, facilitated by technology, is their “secret weapon.”

Ease of Use

NYC Retina staff use Spruce to access inbound communication conveniently and on the go. Althea uses her cell phone to check Spruce messages and calls to stay on top of patient inquiries and coordinate responses.

Spruce powers all of your practice’s communications (phone, messaging, video, fax, and more) and unifies them all into one, easy-to-use tool. Want to learn more about Spruce? Sign up for a free trial today or contact our sales team.

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