In the United States, it’s often difficult to get good-quality
healthcare, despite the number of experienced and innovative
healthcare professionals working in hospitals and offices all over the
country. The focus has always been on reactive healthcare that centers
on interventions and administering care when it is urgently needed.
Unfortunately, this approach is expensive and does not put the
patient’s overall health and experience at the top of the priority list.
For those who are dissatisfied with the current healthcare system,
some other options do exist. Concierge healthcare is patient-centered
and is growing in popularity for the peace of mind and personalization
But what is concierge healthcare, and could it be the next step in
changing the way our nation approaches patient care? Here’s what you
need to know.
What to Know About Concierge Healthcare
Although it is becoming more common, many people have never heard of
healthcare. Essentially, it’s a subscription-based model of care
that encourages lower doctor-patient ratios and quality care. Patients
have direct access to their doctors, and their healthcare providers
can spend more time with them and help coordinate their care.
The concierge model is also known as direct primary care (DPC) and
emphasizes overall health and wellness. Instead of contacting a doctor
only when they feel unwell, patients pay a retainer-type fee and can
ask their healthcare providers specific questions about health and
wellness, get guidance on their health and habits, and receive
comprehensive preventative care.
Although concierge healthcare is a great option that allows patients
to receive better care and doctors to spend more time with patients,
it isn’t available to everyone. The fees can be quite high, which
limits the number of people that can be served by concierge services.
Types of Concierge Healthcare Services
Concierge healthcare can be a little bit confusing. There are several
different types of concierge services and even a few different
definitions. All of them, however, are aimed at giving patients better
care and helping them to live healthier lives.
One type of concierge healthcare is the DPC model, which involves
patients bypassing health insurance and pay doctors directly for their
care. This is typically on a retainer system, which allows patients
more access to their healthcare providers. Most people who use these
concierge services also have health insurance for care beyond simple
diagnostics and preventative care.
Another model is the hybrid approach, which combines private
insurance or Medicare for most routine care, with concierge services
focusing on specialized services, like house calls or wellness
advising. This allows patients to receive more personalized care while
still taking care of most of their healthcare needs through
Concierge healthcare can also refer to a
type of advocacy that helps patients to get the most out of
their healthcare benefits. Healthcare is confusing, and most people
aren’t aware of all the services that are available to them. To
mitigate this, concierge advocates work one on one with people to help
them coordinate their care, find a doctor, and support them in other
health-related matters. Concierge means personalized, supported care
that goes far beyond what you’ll find in a traditional setting.
Are There Other Types of Healthcare Being Provided Outside Hospitals?
Most people prefer to stay out of the hospital whenever possible.
Hospitals are essential for emergency and long-term care, but there
may be a better option for other procedures and non-emergent services.
For outpatient care, ambulatory
surgery centers might play an important role in the future of healthcare.
Ambulatory facilities are helping to take some of the burden off of
hospitals by performing many procedures that don’t require patients to
spend the night. This also makes it easier for patients to access care
in a timely manner. Ambulatory surgery centers, in combination with
concierge healthcare, could improve care immensely in the United States.
Could Concierge Healthcare Be the Future?
Many people are unhappy with the health insurance model of care. It’s
often a struggle for patients to get care and doctors to get paid. On
top of that, copays and deductibles increase costs and confusion for patients.
Concierge healthcare is a
win-win for healthcare providers and patients. With the rising
cost of health insurance, it’s becoming much more attractive for
patients who want peace of mind and easy access to the care they need.
Could it be the future of healthcare? That’s hard to say. But as more
physicians make the switch and patients demand more preventative and
personalized care, concierge healthcare has the potential to become a
much larger presence in the American healthcare landscape.