Concierge Practice: Could the New Models Be Right for You?

Leigh Page


June 17, 2018

In This Article

The Concierge Model Is Changing

Many physicians who are frustrated with the pressures and demands of medicine have at least considered concierge medicine. Most have decided that it's not right for them. And yet, changes are in the wind.

Over the past two decades, concierge medicine has become a modestly popular alternative for physicians who are overloaded with work and want to do what they feel is a better job serving a smaller set of patients.

Charging membership fees of more than $100 a month while still getting insurance reimbursements, the classic concierge practice allows mostly primary care physicians to provide more comprehensive services to a relatively small panel of 50-1000 patients.

What Are the 'New, Improved' Concierge Models?

Now, however, new groups of physicians are changing the original concierge model and recreating it in new ways. For example:

  • Specialists, large group practices, and hospital-employed physicians are offering concierge relationships for some of their patients; the rest retain a traditional arrangement.

  • Other physicians have reduced the membership fee, dropped insurance altogether, and created a less expensive practice model that can appeal to patients with less money.

  • Finally, start-up companies are repackaging the membership model, pairing it with high-deductible insurance, and selling it to employers as a more effective way of covering their workers.

Some proponents envision this consumer-based model as a way to replace our insurance-based system with a consumer-based system and save healthcare from escalating costs. With the degree of discontent many physicians feel toward the healthcare profession, these "new, improved" models may appeal to a growing number of doctors.


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