“I intend to counter local trends by providing patient-centered health care. This will improve the doctor-patient experience by using the technology and services we have at our fingertips. Furthermore, I want to help my patients be engaged in their overall health and wellness. Over time these efforts can lower the overall cost of primary care and healthcare in general.”
What is Concierge Medicine:
Across the United States, more and more patients are having problems with their insurance companies. Large deductible plans are increasingly common. Doctors from other states are managing care protocols and telling patients on what they feel is necessary. It destroys the doctor/patient relationship and because of this reason there are many clinics across the country have moved to a more direct primary care (concierge) practice model.
American healthcare is expensive, inefficient, and often doesn’t produce optimal outcomes. Concierge medicine, also known as direct primary care, helps address all three problems. Direct primary care is a fee-based care model that forges closer connections between patients and providers, encourages preventive and proactive care, reduces bureaucracy and overhead for physicians and health systems, and provides an alternative to increasingly expensive health insurance coverage.
Advantages of Concierge Medicine
1. Increased Access for Patients
With smaller patient panels, direct primary care providers are far more accessible to patients – both electronically and in person – than their traditional peers. They also have shorter wait times for office visits (many offer same-day appointments).
2. Better Continuity of Care
Direct primary care’s smaller patient panels, shorter wait times, and more attentive practitioners make it easier for patients to establish continuity of care.
Simply having a dedicated primary care provider is correlated with improved health outcomes, because patients are more likely to show up for appointments and follow advice from providers they know and trust.
3. More Attentive, Personalized Service
With fewer patients to see overall and on a daily basis, concierge providers can spend more time with each individual patient. According to Medical Economics, direct concierge providers spend at least 30 minutes with patients per consultation; more than double what insurance-based providers typically spend on routine visits. This is a welcome relief for patients used to rushed office visits that don’t allow enough time to cover every issue in detail (or even get to some issues).
And whereas traditional providers often have too many patients to keep straight, concierge providers – particularly at the high end – actually get to know patients by more than the numbers on their charts.
Given the intimacy of the provider-patient relationship, it’s impossible to overstate the value of feeling comfortable in the presence of your doctor.
4. Less Overhead & Greater Simplicity for Doctors
Even small practices need to employ full-time staffers to keep tens of thousands of billing codes straight, or work with expensive outside companies to bill properly and ensure they’re paid for services rendered. Larger health systems employ whole teams of billing and coding specialists to deal with private insurers and Medicare. To put it mildly, billing and administration collectively comprise a huge chunk of healthcare providers’ overhead.
By contrast, concierge providers don’t have to deal with insurance at all. Concierge providers can pass the savings from lower overhead onto customers via lower retainers or out-of-pocket add-on fees.
5. Improved Image & Reputation for Doctors & Health Systems
Many patients have ambivalent relationships with their primary care providers. Concierge model encourages closer patient-provider relationships for all patients, not just the ones who need lots of care. This facilitates deeper understanding, comfort, and good feeling between patients and providers, boosting the medical community’s image and reputation. While that’s clearly a boon for providers, it’s also good news for patients at large, as people who trust their doctors and like spending time with them are more likely to approach them proactively rather than wait until a medical problem can no longer be ignored.