Concierge medicine is a becoming a popular choice for a growing percentage of patients since its inception in 1996. As opposed to more ‘traditional’ healthcare, concierge practices offer 7-day access to a personal physician (or GP); who is looking after up to 30 times fewer patients than regular practices. Patients see doctors who would see up to maybe 200 patients in a year, rather than 2,500 at a traditional private practice, as well as prompt same-day appointments that last as long as the patient needs.
Patients pay an annual membership fee for this exclusive attention, varying worldwide from £5,000 to £80,000. Most concierge practices have a similar ethos, but vary in size and fees according to the level of service provided and level of exclusivity. Fees usually cover 7-day house calls, 24/7 medication delivery, tele-diagnosis and personalised health check-ups.
HealthClic, a London-based concierge medical service, argue that this is the revolutionary element of the model; that concierge doctors have more time to focus on each patient, enabling practice of preventive medicine as standard. It becomes top of the priority list instead of the bottom; a crucial difference.
Priyanka Chaturvedi, CEO, explains that “Our members require highly discreet healthcare which is proactive rather than reactive. Preventive medicine and longevity planning are key. If something happens, their companies could fall apart or film projects could collapse overnight. These clients need a team who get this; and who really understand the challenges that world/industry leaders face.”
HealthClic offer concierge medicine membership to patients and are located in a discreet location in Mayfair on Berkeley Square. There is no walk-in service or reception; patients are seen at the locations convenient to them to ensure full discretion. It is all about house calls – or home visits! This includes home, hotel and office visits – not to mention visits to TV and film sets. The company’s taken on concierge medicine is to empower their members – to whom they refer to as “leaders” – by protecting their health in the long term and giving them the strength to succeed. This is enabled with a HealthClic concierge physician by their side; along with the entire HealthClic team who become strong health advocates for their members 365 days a year.
Which services are provided & why a retainer model is important
Services by concierge doctors range from private same-day home visits by your concierge doctor, prescription deliveries, enhanced coordination between providers and services, full health check-ups and any other services the concierge medical office provides (genetic testing, X-rays, and the list could go on). If a patient needs to see a specialist, the concierge doctor will usually direct them to the best expert in that field, and even go the appointment with them where necessary, while a maximum level of privacy would be ensured at all times.
A retainer model is revolutionary from a doctor’s perspective as they see fewer patients, while providing them with excellent care for the same amount of money.From the patients’ position they spend as much time as they need with their doctor, have access 365 days a year, and are not rushed throughout the appointments; nor having to switch doctors depending on the practice’s availability.
Most importantly, the enhanced preventative health programs offer patients with a long term plan for maintaining their health at the best possible point. This is vital for patients who are time restricted and require complete focus on their area of expertise; they could be industry or global leaders. Knowing that theirs and their family’s health is being looked after by a team of experts who are continually striving to improve; is priceless. Catching early signs of disease is very important, and it is surprising how many high net worth individuals miss medical appointments due to bureaucracy and logistic issues with traditional private healthcare sectors. Concierge medicine is changing this; making protecting patients’ health and their lives a much smoother journey.
How concierge doctors are different to private doctors
In the US, concierge doctors look after fewer patients, and concierge practice lists may vary from 500 to 5000. Unlike private doctors who treat patients at the onset of their illness, concierge doctors focus on preventative healthcare plans. They engage patients in comprehensive care programs aiming to achieve the maximum health and quality of life. In normal practices, doctors have at least 2000 patients but of course a concierge practice can spend more time and attention on each patient and looking at them from a holistic point of view.
A retainer model is however beneficial not only for the doctor but for the patient too. As a patient, paying as you go means that sometimes smaller warning signs may be overlooked or under-prioritised. In addition, there is no real ongoing care plan, and a check-up may easily be missed. The incentives are right. Similarly, from a doctor’s perspective, the incentives are right and they will not superficially treat each problem as you go along. The doctor will want to treat the root cause of the problem and prevent it from happening in future – unlike private doctors who financially benefit each time you return to see them with a problem.
How Concierge Medicine Makes a Difference
Concierge Medicine focuses on preventative healthcare plans that allow doctors to establish health baseline and customize an individual wellness and health plan for each of their patients.
A five-state study in the USA showed extremely positive outcomes for concierge practice patients. In 2010, concierge patients had 49% fewer unexpected and avoidable hospital admissions. A study by the British Medical Journal on Qliance (concierge medical group) showed that their patients had “35% fewer hospitalisations, 65% fewer emergency department visits, 66% fewer specialist visits and 82% fewer surgeries than similar populations”.
The stats are staggering and the evidence is clear. Early detection saves lives; and the future of medical practice will be focused on prevention. Concierge medicine is making waves, and transforming lives.
The billing is simple, you have all of your primary care taken care of and HealthClic confirm they would hold your hand through everything. Even in your efforts to get secondary care appointments on your insurance! Perhaps this is why concierge medicine is often referred to as the “Rolls Royce of medical care”.