Top 5 Questions Patients Ask Before Joining a Concierge Medicine Practice

In an industry known for its cautious approach to change, the reputational shift of concierge medicine over the last two decades is remarkable. Fueled by a post-pandemic appreciation of preventive medicine, reasonable membership fees, and most importantly, a broken healthcare system that shows little hope of regeneration, the concierge model has evolved into mainstream acceptance.

Nowhere is that voiced more clearly than by increasing numbers of patients nationwide joining concierge practices, inspired either by their physician’s conversion to the model or mounting frustration with the impersonal, inattentive and frequently unavailable care at traditional fee-for-service practices.

As pioneering concierge medicine consultants who have thoughtfully addressed thousands of inquiries from prospective patients over the years, Specialdocs Consultants shares insights into the top 5 questions we’re hearing now, and its implications for the future of patient-driven care.

1. What is included in the concierge membership fee?

Not surprisingly, financial considerations are at the top of the list for patients who want to fully understand the benefits of enrolling in a concierge medicine practice. The opportunity to develop a long-term relationship with a physician who provides exceptionally personalized care to a smaller panel of patients is most appreciated, along with the assurance of prompt attention and direct availability after hours. Related to this are inquiries regarding insurance coverage. Many prospective patients erroneously assume that insurance is not involved at a concierge practice, when in fact, the majority of Specialdocs affiliated physicians accept private insurance as well as Medicare.

2. My physician has always provided great care, why do I now need to pay a fee to be part of the practice?

Dedicated physicians who have worked long into the night, every night, to ensure their patients are well cared for may view this question as praiseworthy but challenging. The truth resonates with patients: explaining the long-term unsustainability of caring for an average of 2,500 patients in a traditional practice makes a significant difference in their willingness to enroll. The widespread media coverage of burnout and moral injury experienced by so many medical professionals has also deepened public understanding of a system in crisis.

3. Are virtual visits or house calls provided at a concierge medicine practice?

The necessity of telemedicine appointments during the pandemic has now expanded into a convenience much valued by patients with busy schedules, or frequent travels, or who have difficulties getting to the doctor’s office. In response, many of our Specialdocs physician clients have continued to offer virtual visits to patients upon request. House calls, however, are generally offered on a case-by-case basis only, as in-home care is more limited in scope, with minimal access to advanced technology and treatment.

4. Will I receive holistic care from a concierge physician?

The rising interest in prevention, wellness and longevity care has long been a focus of concierge medicine. With extended, unhurried appointments averaging 30 to 45 minutes (versus 8 -15 minutes in a traditional fee-for-service practice), concierge physicians have the time to thoroughly know their patients and offer individualized plans to help patients enjoy their best, healthiest lives.

5. I only see my doctor once or twice a year so why should I enroll in a concierge practice?

While younger or healthier people may not yet appreciate the benefits of a long-term relationship with a physician who is available when needed most, it’s become painfully clear that seeking help at rushed urgent cares and overcrowded emergency rooms is not the best solution. In the wake of the pandemic, people recognize how precarious health can be, and there is invaluable comfort knowing your concierge physician can be contacted directly on weekends, after hours, or in the middle of the night. We emphasize why joining a concierge practice is not a frivolous expense, but a genuine investment in optimal health and well-being.

If you’re looking to gain your independence to practice your best medicine for your patients and achieve a rare work-life balance, then consider taking our brief STEP form so that we may determine if you’re a good candidate for concierge medicine. Specialdocs is here to answer all your questions and guide you every step of the way towards building your concierge practice.

Patients Increasingly Seeking Concierge Care

In the past five years, concierge medicine has witnessed a notable evolution, transitioning from a specialized service to a widely adopted approach. Physicians are driven by discontent with a healthcare system that’s increasingly dysfunctional, while patients are acknowledging the benefits of maintaining a continuous relationship with their trusted physician.

Concierge medicine presents an opportunity to offer your patients the individualized care they crave, while simultaneously giving you the ability to achieve a rare work-life balance. Our exclusive infographic outlines the numerous advantages of concierge medicine and its appeal to a growing number of patients actively seeking improved care and long-term well-being.

Access and download it now to gain insights into this burgeoning healthcare model!

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