Healthcare is a topic that’s on everybody’s minds these days. Costs are escalating, care quality is dwindling and don’t even think of going to an emergency room without planning to wait before your “emergency” is tended to unless you’ve lost a limb. The good news is that technology is changing the way medical services are being delivered, and telemedicine is at the forefront. Many doctors are opting to lessen their patient load, and choosing instead to contract exclusively with a limited number of individuals and families who pay them a monthly retainer for enhanced access and care.
The concept is called Concierge Care, and while no two plans are alike, they all generally include a monthly fee which may or may not include charges for regular care, house calls or pharmacy services. And increasingly, it involves telemedicine, by which the patient connects to the doctor on a two-way video conference for counseling. The patient is assured faster access to the doctor, often with a cell phone number, and is guaranteed more personalized care. For the high earning families with children, the convenience alone is often worth the time spent in doctor’s office and hospital waiting rooms. Depending on the services provided, the fee can range from $1500 per month to $75,000 per year for a family.
Often delivered in tandem with Concierge Care, the latest trend in healthcare is the home emergency room outfitted with a configuration of equipment previously only found in a setting like the White House. Billed as offering Presidential-Level Service, there are no bright lights and hospital beds in these rooms. They look like ordinary guest rooms with discretely placed equipment that is hidden in cabinetry. For clients who require regular care, or for those who just want the convenience and added quality, these home based emergency rooms are a welcome solution to those who can afford them.
Called Ready Rooms, the home emergency room concept was conceived by former White House physicians to address the need for exceptional health care at home. Their company, Guardian 24/7 (http://www.guardian247.com) will work with your doctors to design a room customized for your needs. Understanding that some of the world’s richest people require easy access to quality care around the world, they also install these units on yachts and private jets.
A push of a button opens the cabinetry and readies the equipment, while simultaneously activating a secure high definition two-way video connection, putting you in contact with a doctor in less than a minute. The doctor is able to control the equipment remotely, running tests and monitoring their results in real time. This ability to make care decisions remotely can be a priceless benefit, especially if the patient is in a critical medical situation or in a remote location far from traditional medical resources. Secure pharmacies can even be installed in the rooms, with physicians able to dispense hundreds of medicines by sending a remote electronic signal which opens small bins in a medicine cabinet placed in the patient’s room, each containing a specific medicine. The home setup is obviously only available to the wealthy, as costs for room can approach $1 million dollars, with an additional monthly monitoring fee between $6,000 and $12,000.
If you’ve got the cash, there may be no reason to worry about poor healthcare anymore. After all, if it’s good enough for the President, shouldn’t it be good enough for you?