FEBRUARY 22, 2016 – While concierge healthcare comes in a variety of service delivery models, there is a retainer-based component to paying the providers. There are many reasons for the growth of concierge medicine such as the preference of many people for expedited access to high-caliber physician talent.
Another very important reason for the appeal of concierge healthcare is that it can mitigate the financial pressures felt by a solid percentage of physicians and medical institutions. For some physicians establishing concierge healthcare services is a way of maintaining their financial position. It is a way to run faster in order to stay in place. For others, it is a way of becoming meaningfully wealthier, as concierge medicine can be a route to becoming a millionaire or even a multi-millionaire.
Practicing physicians and smaller medical institutions are driving most of concierge healthcare today. However, there are strong indications that many hospitals will be establishing their own concierge healthcare practices. For example, the third oldest general hospital in the country, Massachusetts General Hospital, has decided to offer a concierge healthcare service.
The rationale for hospitals to offer concierge medical services parallel those of physicians with the economic benefits near the top of the list. There are potentially enormous benefits to a hospital based on the approach taken to deliver concierge medical services. Being able to provide state-of-the-art medical assessments and treatments will be a big factor in the nature of their concierge medical programs, as this will impact whom they will likely bring in as patients. The adoption of tele-medicine, for example, will significantly expand the hospital’s potential to attract wealthy patients. Another example is comprehensive longevity planning which is proving extremely attractive to the very wealthy.