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What is concierge medicine and should you try it?



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It is no secret that many are frustrated with today's healthcare system: Maternal mortality in the US is rising, access to birth control is at risk, and in some states is that really bad.

Entering: concierge medicine, another – and not brand new – a healthcare approach that is becoming more popular with the fact that it puts the patient in the driver's seat. But what is it and how can you tell if it is right for you? Read on to find out.

What is concierge medicine anyway?

"Concierge medicine means you have a direct relationship with your doctor," says James Maskell, an expert on functional medicine and founder of KNEW Health, a community-based health plan. "Unlike most medical systems, the doctor works for the hospital system, and ultimately the insurance company, a concierge doctor, is usually private in practicing and working directly for the patient." This means that you usually spend more time with your patient Spend a document (and access it).

The way they work is also somewhat different: "Most concierge practices include a number of features services for the additional monthly or annual fee that is paid directly to the practice, outside the insurance." While some people who take concierge medicines have additional health insurance, this is the case for others. Similar to choosing a low or high deductible plan with regular health insurance, people often opt for supplementary insurance based on their health and disposable income.

But many people would prefer to be sure, than to apologize: Many who do this Concierge medications opt for taking a disaster or disability insurance in the event of a serious accident or serious illness to make sure they do are insured. These plans tend to be cheaper than regular health insurance, but can add up to the cost of concierge health care.

What are the advantages?

The Biggest Benefits of Concierge Providers? Longer visits and more personal attention. People like that And because of these benefits, more and more versions of concierge medicine are appearing. Parsley (New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco), One Medical (9 cities nationwide) Next Health (Los Angeles) and Forward (New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco) are just a few of the options available.

"They all offer a much-needed change to the 1

5-minute traditional medical model with the doctor and the rare availability of a same-day appointment, which sends many people to emergency treatment or emergency room for days (or even months) ) with her symptoms, "says Dr. Dawn DeSylvia, an integrative doctor in Los Angeles. (See: If You Think Twice Before You Go to the Emergency Room)

Medical concierge clinics provide on-time access to care, drastically reduced office waiting times, and longer visits to the provider where the patient's actual medical care takes place Needs are better met and treated, says dr. DeSylvia. These are pretty big professionals. The appointment is usually made via an app, online or by a direct call to the doctor.

Also, with concierge medicines, you may have more choices in the treatments and tests that may mean better health for some patients in the long run. "Many people do not have adequate coverage or access to health care providers and information, so they may lack the knowledge to diagnose health issues and prevent serious illnesses," explains Joseph Davis, D.O., a reproductive endocrinologist in New York City. "Concierge medicine allows doctors and patients to have a closer relationship and better access to knowledge and experience, which can help prevent disease by identifying and treating it early."

Are there any disadvantages?

So you get more personalized attention, more control over the treatments you want, and less waiting time for your doctor's availability. That's great. But one of the biggest disadvantages of concierge medicine is the price. "Concierge medications are always more expensive than health insurance because they charge your insurance where possible, but for non-covered services, an additional cash fee is charged," says Maskell.

In some cases, this may mean that this is not the case, a good financial option for individuals with pre-existing or chronic health conditions. "Concierge care usually only covers basic services, so the majority of services are delivered through their health plan for seriously ill chronic patients," explains Maskell. Things like prescription drugs and tests that need to be done in a hospital environment often need to be charged for traditional health insurance.

And just like regular health insurance, there are various pricing options – from $ 150 per month for services such as parsley. This is provided in conjunction with regular health insurance) up to $ 80,000 per year per family for the most exclusive personalized concierge medical practices. Of course, there are many options between these price points.

If you have the resources, adding concierge medicines to your regular insurance may be a good idea for those who already have health issues. Leland Teng, MD, who runs the first hospital-based concierge medical program at Virginia Mason in Seattle, says that this is particularly beneficial for those who have complex illnesses, travel frequently or are otherwise busy. Patients can reach their doctor at any time from anywhere in the world, and they can also schedule home visits as needed.

How can I decide if it is right for you

? a concierge doctor plan? Do this first.

Go in person to say hi. If possible, visit the concierge doctor you are considering. "Go to the doctors who offer it," suggests Maskell. Do you have a good relationship with them? Do you feel comfortable in your office? How is it comparable to the office environment of your doctor? If you were really sick, would you feel comfortable there? It is important to check the answers to these questions before making the change.

Find out what they offer. There are many different types of concierge medicines these days. "Some offer ongoing primary care with your own doctor, and others are more connected to kiosk medicine, offering science-based medical tests and treatments that allow you to literally go in and tell them what tests you want and what treatments you want to perform receive this day, "says Dr. DeSylvia. Depending on your state of health, you should decide which approach is best for you.

Find out how much you spent on medical care last year. What did you cost last year for medical purposes? Maskell recommends that you review this before continuing to review your budget. Is your current health insurance working for you? Did you spend less or more than you would pay for the new concierge service? For some, the money may not be that worrying, but if you're trying to save money by switching to a concierge, it's important to know what you've spent on medical care in the past.

Set your budget. If you know where you stand, decide how much you want to spend . Some concierge providers are very expensive, others not. Some require monthly payments; others work annually. Ask questions until you understand all the potential costs of the provider you are considering.


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