Concierge medicine, also known as “retention medicine” or “boutique”, is a healthcare model in which patients pay an initial fee to access the services of a doctor. This type of care delivery model has been around for almost two decades and is becoming increasingly popular due to its convenience and personalized care. It is estimated that 12,000 doctors currently practice concierge medicine in the United States, although it is still not a widely understood concept. The main benefit of concierge care for both caregivers and patients is the additional time and care that patients receive.
However, there are some criticisms of concierge healthcare, such as limiting access to care for underserved populations. It is important to note that concierge medicine is not a substitute for health insurance, especially if you need to see a specialist or have a condition that requires treatment that your primary care doctor cannot provide. Several organizations are now establishing concierge health care services aimed at the most vulnerable populations. Healthcare Dive outlines the concierge programs offered by Massachusetts General Hospital, the Cleveland Clinic and the Inova Health System.
Rheumatology Advisor notes that, as more health care providers choose to follow the concierge model, the shortage of doctors worsens, especially in the primary care areas of internal medicine, family medicine and pediatrics. The growing demand for concierge services is due to patients' desire to have more convenient access to their primary caregivers. If you're thinking of adding a janitor to your team of health care providers, look for companies that promote the concierge service as low-cost health insurance. This trend also creates professional opportunities for nurses and nursing professionals, largely due to the growing range of health services that are now included in the field of concierge medicine. However, a common misperception among caregivers is that concierge health care allows them to earn more money.
While it is true that they can charge higher fees than traditional doctors, they also have higher overhead costs and may not be able to take on as many patients as they would like.