What is Concierge Medicine?
Concierge medicine, also known as membership care, changes how a patient interacts with their doctor. With a concierge model, patients pay a monthly fee to gain more access to their doctor, including longer appointment times or 24/7 access to the doctor for questions and counseling via email, text or cell phone. Concierge medicine has been on the rise nationally, with more than 4,500 doctors practicing in the U.S.
This is a direct result of patient dissatisfaction about how typical healthcare is run currently. Today, most primary care doctors care for thousands of patients and see them in rushed, fifteen-minute office visits. Patients get less than a few minutes to discuss their health concerns, often only one concern per visit. It can take weeks to get an appointment and if something is needed urgently, patients see an assistant or a doctor they may have never met.
According to a 2014 Kaiser Health News article, today’s traditional fee-for-service healthcare model rewards doctors for seeing patients in bulk, thereby reducing time spent and the doctor’s ability to manage more complex issues in a typical 15-minute doctor visit. This is compounded by the millions of consumers now entering the system due to the Affordable Care Act.
“By all accounts, short visits take a toll on the doctor-patient relationship, which is considered a key ingredient of good care, and may represent a missed opportunity for getting patients more actively involved in their own health,” Kaiser Health News.
At AIM Health, members pay a $100 per month membership (or concierge) fee and receive these additional benefits.
- 24/7 access to doctors by phone, text, or email. Patients can call with questions, make an appointment, use AIM Health’s secure text message service, or email via AIM Health’s patient portal.
- Members have no long waits. AIM Health offers same day or next day appointments.
- Members have longer appointment times.
- Members have access to an online patient portal, ideal for times when patients can’t remember the name of one of their medicines or if they forgot what the doctor mentioned at the last visit. The portal can be securely accessed from anywhere and on most devices. Patients can also schedule appointments online or exchange emails with their AIM Health doctor.
How it works.
Patients pay a monthly membership fee. The membership fee provides access for extra benefits such as 24 hour access to your doctor. Think of it as an upgrade to your current care. Office visits and traditional health services are billed to insurance just as you would expect. AIM Health accepts most insurance, including Medicare.