A rapidly transforming healthcare environment will enable a substantial number of investors and healthcare entrepreneurs focused on concierge medicine to become wealthy and possibly ultra-wealthy.
By Russ Alan Prince, Forbes, Contributor — I write about the creation and management of exceptional wealth. Note; Opinions expressed by Forbes Contributors are their own.
JANUARY 21, 2015 – Among primary care and emergency room physicians, as well as a number of different types of specialists such as cardiac physicians, concierge medicine is taking hold. It enables these doctors to treat patients the way they prefer. It also, very importantly, ensures they can make a viable living at a time when there is often strong downward pressure on their incomes.
Hospitals and other medical networks are also looking to the concierge medical model to attract patients and generate substantial revenues. All in all, concierge healthcare is likely to become normative among certain – generally wealthier – segments of the population.
Because of the appeal of concierge medicine in the current healthcare environment, coupled with new technologies, there are likely to be some big winners in the field with “big winners” being defined as individuals becoming seriously wealthy. Concierge medicine is likely going to mint a plethora of millionaires with a number of them becoming exceptionally wealthy.
The physicians delivering care are not going to be the biggest economic winners. They will quite probably be significantly better off financially and more in control of their practices than otherwise, but they are not going to gain most of the financial rewards of concierge medicine, though they certain can – provided they run their practices well – become millionaires and even multi-millionaires.
The greater monetary rewards will go to astute investors and healthcare entrepreneurs driving concierge medicine by facilitating new, superior models of healthcare delivery. For example, there is a high probability that telemedicine will become a critical and normative component of concierge medicine. It will be essential for immediately diagnosing and treating patients wherever they may be. It will also be increasingly vital for the ongoing monitoring of certain patients. The backers of telemedicine and the healthcare entrepreneurs who develop the technologies and the operational structures to use the technologies will likely reap the riches.
While concierge medicine, as noted, is currently geared to the wealthier members of society, it will increasingly, selectively become democratized. Many of its best healthcare delivery practices including telemedicine will become available to more and more people. This is not only a result of a socially responsible society, but it’s also a function of a capitalist society.
The bottom line is that new developments in medicine are driven, in part, by attention to the bottom line. Concierge medicine is a healthcare delivery approach that will be embraced by a percentage of patients. In some respects, it will be a testing ground for new technologies. Moreover, it will be a field that will likely create quite a number of wealthy and a few extraordinary wealthy individuals.