Are you fed up with having to wait a long time for an appointment? Hasty visits? Not being able to communicate with your doctor over the phone or over email?
You’re not the only one who feels this way. It is also disliked by doctors. However, most physicians today are compelled to complete 30–40 patient visits every day as employees of a large medical practice. Appointments are limited to 15 minutes in length. To manage a normal patient load of 4,000, this is required.
Some primary care physicians are abandoning this business-oriented approach to medicine.
The doctor–patient relationship is prioritized in “retainer-based,” “concierge,” or “boutique” medicine. You can join a primary care practice that is committed to staying small and intimate (150–600 patients) for an annual membership fee (average $1,500 – $2,400). Your annual fee enables the doctor to provide you with a guarantee.
• Same-day or next-day appointments are available.
• Appointments that are longer (30 minutes on average)
• Communication by phone and email, with personal follow-up on lab findings
The membership price is paid out of your own money. Medicare does not cover it. Because the concierge doctor would bill Medicare for office visits, you must also maintain an original Medicare coverage and, more than likely, a supplementary policy. You must still pay your insurance premiums, deductibles, and copayments, just as you would with traditional medicine (unless your supplemental plan covers them).
What to Look for in a Concierge Medical Professional
Is the doctor an American Board of Internal Medicine certified physician? (An extra “bonus” if you’re also a geriatrician.) Is there a connection to a major hospital?
Do they accept Medicare’s “assignment”? If they do, they must provide you an “Advance Beneficiary Notice of Noncoverage” if they charge you more than Medicare authorizes for a certain service. If they refuse to accept assignment, that indicates they’re willing to bill Medicare, but you could owe a debt of up to 15% more than Medicare will pay. (Neither your health insurance nor your supplemental plan will cover the additional costs.)
There are now just 12,000 concierge physicians in the United States, but this number is rapidly increasing!
Are you looking for a concierge doctor?
Let’s have a look at your possibilities. Call us at 855.456.7972.
Learn more about our products and services by visiting us on our website at www.ikorofwpa.com