Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Markets in Everything: $200 Concierge Medicine

The NY Times recently featured One Medical Group which is:

"A new model for primary care that aims to set a nationwide example. With 31 physicians in San Francisco and New York, it offers most of the same services provided by personalized “concierge” medical practices, but at a much lower price: $150 to $200 a year. 

One Medical Group doctors see at most 16 patients a day; the nationwide average for primary-care physicians is 25. They welcome e-mail communication with patients, for no extra charge. Same-day appointments are routine. And unlike most concierge practices, One Medical accepts a variety of insurance plans, including Medicare. 

But One Medical is the first to try to carry out such a model on a large scale. It now has several thousand patients and a growth rate of 50 percent a year, fueled largely by word of mouth. The group's founder Dr. Lee said he planned to open a third office in Manhattan next month and expand to a third large city next year."

MP: Add this to the growing list of market-driven innovations in U.S. health care including ZocDoc, retail clinics, the No Insurance Club, Deeply-Discounted Surgery for Cash, medical care using web-based social media, medical tourism, and Roadside Medical Clinics for over-the-road truck drivers.

5 Comments:

At 2/15/2011 6:17 PM, Blogger morganovich said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

 
At 2/15/2011 6:45 PM, Blogger Eric said...

Their "reduced prices for cash payments" goes away with Obamacare if they intend to offer services to Medicare patients. Cash patients are required to be charged the same amount for the same services as any federally-funded patient.

So, they have to form a "club" of patients with annual membership fees that offset the increased prices they are now required to charge you.

My chiropractor has done something similar for his cash patients for this very reason. It now costs me 17% more (2.1% inflation not included) to pay cash than before Obamacare.

 
At 2/15/2011 11:08 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"It now costs me 17% more (2.1% inflation not included) to pay cash than before Obamacare."

But those people on TV keep saying that Obamacare will lower costs. How could prices go up?

I wouldn't make too many changes right now if I were you, I have a feeling the whole hideous package will be swept away soon enough.

 
At 2/16/2011 11:02 AM, Blogger Eric said...

I'm not changing. I encourage him to go cash-only - until that is outlawed as well. His real issue is that he wants to discount cost to some elderly patients that use medicare. Whatever price level he sets for a medicare user MUST be the same price charged to all patients (insurance, cash-only, etc.). In other words, Obamacare prevents the doctor from being charitable and giving away a portion of his services to people whom he decides to. It is socialism defined - we are interchangeable widgets.

 
At 2/16/2011 10:08 PM, Blogger Ron H. said...

"Obamacare prevents the doctor from being charitable and giving away a portion of his services to people whom he decides to. It is socialism defined - we are interchangeable widgets."

Boy, you're right. A sad state of affairs. Maybe if your doctor refused to comply, an interesting court case could develop questioning constitutionality.

I suppose that's a lot to ask of someone who just wants to make a living and do the right thing as they see it.

 

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