The healthcare system has evolved tremendously over the past few years. Shortages and increased demand have exacerbated underlying issues, pushing many individuals and families to explore creative options for getting the help they need.
Concierge medicine is a subscription payment model that provides improved, continuous access to their healthcare provider. Here’s what you need to know about this service and how it can benefit you.
The Pros of Concierge Medicine
There are several benefits of concierge medicine that make it appealing to patients. The overarching advantage is accessibility. Many patients find that the concierge service gives them increased access to medical care, minimizing wait times and frustrations.
Many patients who use this approach to internal medicine at Erin Reese MD also report the increased focus and longer appointment times. With this service, physicians have more bandwidth to sit and engage with individual patients rather than trying to meet a visit quota. This benefit can help patients feel more comfortable sharing their concerns and improve their quality of care.
While concierge medicine is priced differently than traditional medical visits, many patients experience cost savings. Access to consistent care contributes to preventative health measures and early diagnostics, helping curb the development of long-term illness.
The Cons of Concierge Medicine
As with anything, there are some downsides to concierge medicine. As this is a newer service option, many areas don’t have physicians who offer the concierge approach — especially in rural areas.
The cost of concierge medicine could also be a limiting factor for some. It’s important to weigh the costs and value of this service when determining if it’s right for you.
How To Decide if Concierge Medicine Is Right for You?
The first step in determining whether concierge medicine is right for you is to reflect on your healthcare experience. Consider your needs, preferences, and anticipated healthcare journey. For example, if you have an autoimmune disorder or chronic disease that requires ongoing care, the enhanced accessibility of a concierge service is worthwhile.
Your budget and ability to cover the monthly or annual costs of concierge medicine is another essential factor to consider. Most insurance plans don’t cover membership fees for concierge medicine. However, it could be worth paying out of pocket, especially if the provider is in your coverage network.
Take the time to research and compare your options when exploring concierge medicine. Determine the availability in your area and decide whether it’s worth switching from your existing healthcare provider. You may determine that a concierge service is worth it if the provider offers a range of additional services, such as nutrition consulting or in-home visits. You may also decide that you’re comfortable with your existing doctor and aren’t ready to make a change.
Concierge medicine is an innovative approach to improving the patient experience. Patients who use this service have increased access to and time with their healthcare provider, which contributes to a better quality of care. However, this elevated service comes at a cost.
Use the guidelines above to make an informed decision about whether concierge medicine is right for you.