What's the Difference? Traditional Primary Care v.s. Concierge Care

What's the Difference? Traditional Primary Care v.s. Concierge Care

How was your last visit to your primary care physician? Most Americans spend the majority of their health appointments in the waiting room before meeting with a doctor who knows their chart but little about them or their concerns. 

These patients are experiencing “transactional care.” Transactional care refers to what most people now experience as traditional primary care. 

In some primary care practices, patients are seen as a number in a system where they receive medical care without a personal relationship. The healthcare environment dictates that patients only spend a limited amount of time with their physician. Or even more concerning, patients will reactively opt for using urgent care for their primary care needs rather than scheduling a doctor’s visit and going through the waiting process. 

Because of these factors, many look elsewhere to meet their primary care needs. With numerous options and styles of care available, how do you know where to start when choosing what fits your needs? 

An Improved Model for Primary Care

The concierge (membership-based) model is a standout for those looking for personalized preventative medical care. 

Members who receive care under the concierge model experience a more personal and collaborative approach to their healthcare and a vastly improved patient experience. 

While traditional primary care is often confined to a standard, and often restrictive, set of office hours, concierge medicine gives you the convenience of connecting with your primary care doctor anytime via an extended visit, a secure text, or a phone call.

Members of concierge services gain direct connectivity to their doctor. This direct connectivity means patients don’t have to navigate through a front desk. 

Related Post: The Importance of Keeping Yourself, Your Patients, and Your Practice Healthy 

How Concierge Care Is Different From Transactional Models 

Because physicians in a transactional business aren’t compensated for knowing their patients well, this doctor-patient relationship no longer exists in traditional models of care. 

If you can remember a time when your doctor knew you and spent time addressing your concerns with you during appointments, a concierge model offers a comparable experience. 

Below are factors for a patient to consider before making the switch to a concierge physician. 

The Cost: 

As memberships can vary in cost, finding the model that fits you well is essential. Generally, in a concierge model of care, you’ll typically pay a monthly membership fee. 

Number of Patients:

Typically, primary care physicians take on a large panel of patients with little time to focus on them as individuals. 

According to a study from the Journal of American Family Medicine, the majority of primary care physicians reported a panel size of 1,200 to 1,900 patients. Meanwhile, a typical concierge practice sees a panel of 900 to 1,000 patients. 

Membership Perks: 

Many concierge programs offer membership perks to both physicians and patients. 

For example, a CCPHP membership gives access to the SENS Solution® Wellness Program. This program provides extensive and exclusive wellness and healthy lifestyle resources and offers members one-on-one health coaching sessions. 

Ability to Focus on Patients: 

By spending more time with each patient and not needing to focus on revenue from individual visits, concierge-partnered physicians can focus more on spending enough time with each patient to address each issue. 

What’s the Best Option of Care for Me? 

A concierge membership can offer connectivity and collaboration with your primary care physician rather than a transactional and reactive care experience. 

Concierge care gives patients with complex or chronic conditions an increased ability to connect with their doctors in a way that is unmatched compared to other models. In the concierge model, your physician typically has more time to provide comprehensive care as they worry less about administrative work and appointment volume. 

While both options provide patients with personalized care, what option is best depends on your specific needs. 

Interested in Contacting a Doctor? 

Ultimately, the decision surrounding your medical care is up to you. 

Schedule a consultation with our team to see how concierge care can benefit you. Contact our team to connect to the right physician to fit your needs. 

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