ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–With reimbursement slashed up to 40 percent and overhead and regulations increasing, a growing number of cardiologists are beginning to explore alternative practice models, such as concierge medicine.
Wayne Lipton, founder and managing partner of Concierge Choice Physicians, notes that over the past few years, the number of cardiologists making inquiries to the company regarding how to launch a concierge program has increased significantly.
Most recently, one of the top cardiologists in New York, Sanford J. Friedman, M.D., who is also the Associate Clinical Professor of Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, opted to begin offering the Hybrid Concierge program from CCP. In this model, he continues to see all his patients, and opens up the option to participate in a concierge program to the small percentage of patients who want that choice.
Within just a few months of announcing the new option for patients, he completely filled the concierge program, while maintaining his relationship with his traditionally insured patients, including those on Medicare.
Lipton reports that the top four reasons physicians give for contacting the company are:
- Drive economic stability.
- Maintain independence, especially when it comes to decisions related to patient care.
- Secure compensation for the extra advocacy, advice and time they give patients.
- Maintain relationships with insurers and referral sources.
Concierge programs are uniquely suited to address these areas, he notes.
“Cardiologists today feel under siege,” says Lipton. “Many are struggling for the first time. Some have sold their practices to hospital systems or are considering a sale, and others are retiring early to avoid the pressure and stress of running a practice today.”
One cardiologist who can relate to the challenges of running a successful practice today is Arthur Weisenseel, M.D., a successful Manhattan cardiologist for more than five decades. “It was getting so bad for several months that my partners and I weren’t taking a salary.” But we kept looking for solutions as we’ve worked too hard and our patients need us too much to simply pack up our bags and go home.”
The solution Dr. Weisenseel found was CCP’s Hybrid Concierge model, as it was important to him to be able to continue to care for all his patients. Plus, Dr. Weisenseel says, the additional private source of revenue has helped to stabilize his practice, benefiting his entire office.
Afsane Haddad, MD, a cardiologist in McLean, VA, a suburb of Washington, D.C., appreciates how her concierge program helps her provide care coordination to patients who need it.
“The heart is not an organ in isolation,” notes Dr. Haddad. “Our patients need considerable care coordination and oversight. At the time they are the sickest, and faced with the biggest challenges, patients don’t need a stranger, they need someone who knows them and who can play an active role in their care. It’s hard to provide that level of care in today’s healthcare world. Concierge programs give cardiologists the mechanism to secure reimbursement for the care coordination, time and intensive clinical support they must provide to cardiac patients.”
Lipton notes that while cardiologists play an important role in providing centralized and coordinated care to cardiac patients, they aren’t taking the place of primary care physicians. “We’ve found that many patients with cardiac disease view their cardiologist as their core provider of care. The Concierge Choice Cardiology program is simply an option that provides patients with a dedicated physician for their specialized needs while giving cardiologists the ability to secure patient-funded reimbursement for the additional services and time they provide cardiac patients.”
To help cardiologists better understand how concierge programs work for them, CCP is hosting a free webinar, Monday, November 24, at 6:30 p.m. EST/3:30 p.m. PST. Additional information is at http://bit.ly/1zVrRF5.
About Concierge Choice Physicians
Dedicated to providing real options for patients and physicians, Concierge Choice Physicians™ is the largest private provider of the full range of concierge programs available today – Hybrid, Transitional and Full-Model. CCP is also the industry’s second largest concierge medicine company overall. The company provides innovative, flexible and affordable models proven to work in medical practices of any size – from solo physicians to large medical practice corporations – both independent and affiliated with hospitals or health systems. Headquartered in Rockville Centre, NY, the company works with medical practices in 22 states. For more information, visit www.choice.md or call 877-888-5590.
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