By Concierge Medicine Today
Summer 2019 – Each day, we receive countless requests from Patients online searching specifically for a Concierge Medicine Doctor.
Some of the comments they left included:
- “The Staff Is Difficult To Work With”
- “I Feel Like A Number”
- “He/She Spends Less Than 15-Min. w/ me per visit.”
- “Not thorough in tests”
Patient Fatigue or Patient Burnout is all to real and unfortunately a number today no one even tracks. If this saddens you or moves your spirit in any way, there’s hope. There’s hope because it means you and others like you care enough to try to change the status quo verses defend it.
Simply stated, Concierge Medicine is a subscription-based or membership medicine healthcare delivery business model where the Physician is purposeful and intentional about blending certain characteristics of service and medical expertise into the rhythm of his/her organization and medical practice environment. That may include:
- Finding unique ways to collaborate and communicate with Patients more thoroughly and effectively;
- Address specific healthcare needs and questions whenever they arise;
- It is a place where the Physician partners with each Patient individually to create a preventive lifestyle planning solution that is flexible and obtainable;
- It is a safe, comfortable, inviting, friendly and professional medical environment;
- It is a setting whereby the Physician loans his/her time, talent, expertise and resources to needs of the Patient.
There’s obviously a lot more to it than that. A lot more.
Healthcare has become so messy that you’ve now learned how to survive and thrive in a real mess. The typical business models that you were never trained to tackle but are expected to excel at were built around teaching and telling Patients what to do and what is right. Then, you move onto the next Patient and the next, and the next … day after day.
So why are we as human beings compelled to stay and operate in the mess? Charting. Filing. Typing. Billing. Rinse and Repeat, year after year until retirement. Is it because of the consequences of not doing so? Is it fear of the unknown? Is it financial? It’s easy to defend it. But, is it really that comfortable or is it something more personal?
Many of the business and revenue models and medical practices you and your colleagues operate in today are built around the presupposition that Patients will increase their knowledge by obeying what the Doctor says.
Patient ‘A’, do this. Patient ‘B’, take this. Lifestyle changes and the private, confidential and today, rather unhealthy relationship between a Doctor and a Patient right now is largely built on obedience. A healthy relationship we all know is built on trust and relationship. Dare we argue the patient-physician relationship today is unhealthy? So as a person’s confidence in their Doctor increases then you start to see lifestyle and patterns that are healthy start to take hold, right?
We don’t have to tell you that simply by becoming a Physician in Concierge Medicine, you’re already in a single digit percentile of your peers. You’re changing the very conversation and relational dynamic with each patient, each day … whereby you’re moving the patient from do this, take that, just obey my orders to ‘Let’s do this because ….’
Have you ever sat across from a Patient, a loved one or maybe a family member during the holidays and heard their story about how they overcame an illness, cancer or seemingly impossible health crisis?
Usually they talk about the people and the individuals that were put into their path along the way.
“Then I met Dr. Smith … then she did this and this …” Or, “Then he introduced me to and told me to …”
We’ve probably never heard a story without a relational component. There’s always a mention of that Doctor, that specialist or that nurse.
How can more Doctors be fully present? How can Doctors with all of the weight you carry into the practice and into the exam room elevate and dignify [verb: make (something) seem worthy and impressive] the Patient relationship?
Patients Are Losing Hope In the Doctor-Patient Relationship, So They’re Turning to Apps, Urgent Care’s and Other Types of Providers
A Patient won’t come back because of function or process or location of your practice or the degree on your wall. Those things might be attractive on paper and convenient … but successful business understand that people, customers, yes, even Patients … choose to come back to brands, businesses, events and experiences because of how they or you [e.g. their Doctor] made them feel. Doctors are in the people business and you’ve got the potential to elevate the dignity of countless people every single day. Yet we’re still losing the caring and relational component of healthcare.
So In 2019, Where Is Patient Search for Concierge Medicine Happening Most?
- New York