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Why is the subscription model better?

Why it works

Like all successful recurring revenue models, membership medicine works because it delivers tangible benefits to both parties that build over time.

Benefits for patients. In this era of sky-high deductibles, many people avoid doctor visits because they can’t afford to pay out of pocket. They may put off going until they absolutely have to, and end up getting sicker as a result.

But for just $35 to $100 a month, patients in a subscription-based practice can see their doctor as often as they wish. And not just when they’re sick. They can go regularly and prevent getting sick in the first place.

In fact, preventive care is a main attraction of retainer-based practices. When compared to traditional healthcare, membership medicine actually reduces costs as much as 20%. It does so by keeping patients healthier and out of hospitals, according to a 2015 study by Qliance, a Seattle-based DPC provider.

Benefits for doctors. Traditional primary care is a volume business. Doctors are compensated for services. As a result, many doctors must handle 2500 to 4000 patients a year, spending an average of only 15 minutes with each one. In contrast, physicians with MDVIP see no more than 600. The industry average is 500.

Concierge doctors have more time. And, because their income comes from subscriptions instead of services, they can spend that time providing quality care, not volume services. They can give patients the full attention they need. They even have time to work with patients between visits to help them reach their goals. The end result is more satisfying outcomes for both patients and their doctors.

Looking ahead

Currently there are only about 6500 concierge practitioners in the U.S. But that’s a gain of nearly 50% since 2012, according to the American Academy of Private Physicians. That growth will likely accelerate because today’s patients, younger ones especially, are more motivated to stay healthy at a price they can afford. For their part, many doctors are eager to find ways to serve patients better at a pace they can manage. As with so many recurring revenue models that have come before, subscription medicine may prove to be the right prescription at the right time. Read more at:

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