March 8

What Is Concierge Medicine And Do You Need It?

Navigating today’s healthcare system can be overwhelming. There are often many insurance plans to choose from, whether you’re buying them from your employer or the individual market, and the differences between them are often so perplexing that it’s sometimes difficult to make the right decision. After all, you have to balance your health needs (and those of your family) with the cost of premiums, deductibles, copays, etc. Some plans cover a limited amount, other plans cover a much wider variety of illness and treatments, and there are a huge variety of plans in between that make it even more challenging to pick the right one.

The accessibility of concierge medicine makes long wait times a thing of the past. With this business model we maintain a smaller panel of patients. This gives our office the opportunity to offer same-day appointments, longer office visits and frequent email and phone communication.

A survey released in March by Merritt Hawkins, a Dallas medical consulting and recruiting firm, found it takes 29 days on average to secure an appointment with a family care physician, up from 19.5 days in 2014. For some specialties, the delays are similarly long, with a 32-day wait to see a dermatologist, and a 21-day delay at the typical cardiologist?s office. But with concierge medicine, you get a doctor on-call when you need healthcare.

A few studies have found that patients who sign up for this type of care report more satisfaction and fewer visits to emergency rooms and specialists.

Here at Shakthi, we offer an integrative approach that includes nutrition, mind/body focus, sleep promotion, and movement in addition to what most people would call traditional or conventional medicine. We use evidence-based approaches to all our treatments, just like any doctor, but we are able to offer a wider selection of treatments because we are not limited by insurance companies in what we offer. We believe in the personalized approach to health where our team works with you to develop individual plan for health.

We have found this model is the best way to build a patient-centered practice focused on developing meaningful relationships with our clients. It frees us up from restrictions placed on who we treat and how we treat them, and clients can decide the best way to pay either in monthly installments or a singly annual fee. Most importantly of all, the concierge medicine model allows us to spend the exact amount of time needed to fully pursue each patient’s health concerns. Instead of rushing from one patient to the next, we’re able to take the time to really listen and get to know our patients, which ultimately helps us make better, more personalized recommendations.

Please keep in mind that even though we do not accept insurance we do advise all our patients to keep this option in place for other medical expenses. This includes prescription drugs, lab and radiology tests, and hospitalization costs. If you’re under age 65, that means at least a high-deductible plan purchased either from your employer or through a state or federal marketplace. If you are 65 or older, you should still enroll in Medicare, and consider extra coverage, such as Medigap or Medicare Advantage.

If you’re interested in learning more about our concierge medicine services, we encourage you to schedule a visit to our facilities, meet our doctors and staff, and see how concierge medicine might be right for you.


Tags

Concierge Medicine, health and wellness, healthcare, integrative medicine


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