The concept of a family practice doctor, as we know it now, is rather new. For most of our modern history the doctor was someone connected with the family. The doctor knew their patients, their medical history, their occupation, and often even a good bit about their daily habits. They knew the names of their patient’s children, and might have even been there when the kids were born. The doctor was someone who served the family and the community. They made house calls. They spent time following up on health concerns.
This picture of the personal physician is in stark contrast to how many people interact with their physicians in our 21st century model. Startling statistics have come out in the past 10 years about the average day and client load of a standard doctor. For example, the New York Times reports that appointment times allocate a full 8 minutes for a doctor to spend with each of their patients. According to the Washington Post, physicians in the United States have an average of 2,367 patients under their care.
A client load of this magnitude and appointment allocations of such a minimal amount of time make it impossible for physicians to know their patients in the same way it used to be. At least, that is the case in a standard medical practice.
Concierge medicine is the exception to these rules. This is a branch of medical care that has arisen out of the need for more personalized attention and medical care that the bulk-service physician industry no longer allows for.
What Concierge Medicine Delivers
There is a reason not all physicians provide concierge medicine. This type of practice brings doctors one-on-one with their patients, including into their homes and lives. Typically, a concierge medicine program will include benefits like:
• House calls, as needed
• Longer appointment times, including a complete review of test results
• Same day and next day appointment availability, as needed
• Wellness coaching, including medical weight loss
• State of the art medical testing
• 24/7 access to your physician
Concierge medicine allows a physician to develop a closer relationship with their patients, giving them the chance to spend more time focusing on the needs of one individual. In practice, this means more time for preventative and diagnostic testing, more time to review test results, and a greater chance of catching chronic and potentially fatal issues before they develop.
If you are interested in participating in a concierge medicine program, don’t wait too long to contact your personal doctor. Because of the nature of concierge medicine practices, there isn’t always open availability in a program. Contact us for more information.
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