The Advantages of Concierge Medicine
Concierge medicine is a medical practice focused on you and your needs. It’s an innovative new approach designed to address many of the inconveniences and shortcomings of today’s standard fee-for-service office care, and it’s quickly growing in popularity because it does so successfully.
In some respects, though, it’s really not so new. It embraces personalized care based on a strong doctor-patient relationship like those that used to exist in bygone eras, when doctors knew patients and their families well, when they happily made house calls, when appointment times were the actual time patients were seen, when there was no stopwatch counting down the 10 minutes till the end of the consultation, and so on.
I’d love to see everyone have a concierge medicine doctor. It’s medicine without limits. It’s medicine that can so much more effectively protect and improve health. I want to share a few of the major advantages offered by concierge medicine practices.
Concierge Medicine Offers Truly Personalized Care
As a concierge patient, you receive one-on-one care without limits. Your doctor spends as much time with you as is needed, listening and discussing, rather than finding the fastest route to the end of the appointment knowing the next patient is already becoming impatient.
When your doctor gets to know you and gives you enough time, you can address every nook and cranny, question, concern, and problem. This allows for more informed, more personally tailored advice, prevention, and treatment. It’s the difference, for example, between being told to “eat better and exercise more” and getting a thorough, practical, actionable plan for what specifically you can do differently to feel and be healthier.
Concierge Medicine Offers 24/7 Care
Medical problems don’t care what time it is. Neither does your concierge doctor. Concierge service means you have your doctor’s personal phone number and permission to call at 3:00 am if you need to. Personally, I’ve found that most people have concerns after hours. There’s great peace of mind—and potential health benefits—in being able to pick up the phone and call your physician’s cell.
Concierge Medicine Means No Waiting
It’s tough enough to fit appointments into your busy schedule, especially during business hours, so you don’t need additional complications due to your doctor’s limited availability. You also probably have better things to do than sit around in a waiting room for 45 minutes past your appointment time. Concierge doctors typically guarantee same- or next-day appointments, and they’ll see you at their office or come to your home, as you prefer.
Concierge Medicine Is More Affordable
Most people think this type of care is out of their reach. Not at all. In fact, because it’s more efficient, more prevention-focused, and there are none of the financial incentives of a fee-for-service pay structure to do as much as possible, concierge medicine is often significantly less costly. Many people could simply forgo an unhealthy habit, perhaps a daily latte, and apply that money to investing in their health with a concierge doctor. Choose wisely.
Concierge Doctors Coordinate Care
A common criticisms of the American healthcare system is that patients receive such disjointed care. If you see multiple specialists and providers, they don’t communicate with each other. Each focuses on their particular part of your body or disease with little thought to the whole picture. Getting test results and other records shared between unrelated practices can be a headache, too. Your concierge doctor ensures you see who you need to see, when you need to see them. Plus you have a medical professional gathering all the disconnected information, compiling comprehensive medical records for you, getting a big-picture view, and advocating for you the entire time.