Concierge Medicine: Changing the Future of Primary Care for Better or for Worse?

Visiting the doctor’s office may not top the list of favorite activities for most consumers, but eliminating common stressors such as juggling one’s schedule to squeeze in an appointment, spending too much time in the waiting room, and then maybe seeing the physician for only a few minutes, can make the experience much more pleasant. 

What if the majority of this stress could be alleviated? According to the American Academy of Private Physicians (AAPP), use of “concierge” or retainer-based physicians can be part of the solution. In fact, the number of these types of physician services has doubled in the past two years, according to AAPP. 

Medicare to Cover Preventive Services to Reduce Obesity: Prevention and Wellness Programs Gaining Momentum in Private and Public Sectors

Late last month, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that the Medicare program will cover preventive services in an effort to combat obesity. In the past year, the federal government has launched a number of programs and funding initiatives to address the growing waistlines of Americans of all ages. The goal is to help us to live longer and healthier lives – along with reducing the cost associated with treating disease and managing chronic illness. Many of these campaigns have been fueled by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA). These efforts mirror recent trends by health insurers and employers in the private sector to promote health and wellness.

Preventive Measures to Come to New Plans

As part of the new health care regulations, preventive care is now to be included in new health plans for no additional member costs. This applies solely to new plans. Current grandfathered plans are not required to institute the preventive measures outlined in the new bill.

Some of the preventive measures will take effect now, while others will take effect next year. Among the measures that will go into effect with the new plans include mammograms, immunizations, colonoscopies and other preventive services.