A completely personal approach, comprehensive view of human health, sufficient time with each patient, extensive preventive measures, innovation and trust.
Those are the key tenets of concierge medicine, an approach that has become well-established in the USA and will now be combined with lifestyle medicine for the first time. Prague will soon be the first city in Europe where a Concierge Medicine Europe clinic based on this approach will open. The clinic’s physicians will proactively look for ways to get their clients in the best shape and focus on maintaining their good health instead of merely treating symptoms of a particular disease or health problems.
Up to 66% of patients select their physician according to whether they like and trust them. This was a finding in a survey conducted by the US portal Concierge Medicine Today (here). On the contrary, long wait times are one reason why patients switch physicians. Going to the physician often entails hours in the waiting room or, with specialists, waiting months to get an appointment. The concierge medicine approach is different. For example, a check-up at a concierge medicine clinic can be arranged for the same day or at most the next day, and lasts at least 30 minutes because the patient’s personal physician takes a detailed approach and considers aspects that are beyond a typical general practitioner’s capacity.
The return of the personal physician
A personal physician knows his or her patients thoroughly and works closely with various specialists. He or she acts as the client’s guide in the health care system. A personal physician emphasises innovative and preventive treatment methods such as capsular colonoscopy (non-invasive colonoscopy that does not require hospitalisation), which is completely unique in the Czech Republic, and blood tests with immediate results to provide clients with convenience and security.
“Our vision is to build an unparalleled health care facility that will emphasise a personalised approach, prevention and a healthy lifestyle. All of our professionals are members of the European Lifestyle Medicine Association (ELMA). In serious cases, we seek a second opinion from collaborating physicians who work in centres of excellence, such as Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, etc.,” says Wolfram Schleuter, founder of the clinic, ambassador of the European Lifestyle Medicine Association and a successful entrepreneur.
The first in Europe
At the newly established Concierge Medicine Europe clinicin Prague, which is scheduled to open in early May, medical care is also closely connected with lifestyle medicine. Wolfram Schleuter adds: “We are the first Lifestyle Medicine Centre of Excellence of this nature in Europe. Personal physicians, specialists, nutritionists and personal trainers work as one team. The clinic even has its own fitness centre. We have a special Lumbar Extension device – the only one of its kind in the Czech Republic – which can help alleviate back pain from long hours of sitting or from golf, and also help with prevention.“ Lifestyle medicine is based on a comprehensive approach to client care, a combination of nutritional therapy, regular physical activity, stress management, but also psychological and social support, which are key factors in the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. “After a mere 24 days of a specialised lifestyle medicine programme, patients with coronary heart disease saw an average cholesterol reduction of 20.5%. During the first few weeks, there was also a rapid improvement in angina pectoris patients, with up to 78% of them either reducing or discontinuing medication.” says Dr. Denys Tsviuk, Lifestyle Medicine Specialist.
The concept originated in the United States
Concierge Medicine is a concept developed by physicians Howard Maron and Scott Hall in 1996 in Seattle, USA, as part of a unique approach to patients called medical excellence, or in other words the ability to provide excellent health care and meet patient expectations. It focuses primarily on preventive care and raising the individual’s quality of life. While this is a completely new branch of medicine in Europe, there are over 5,000 physicians providing this kind of care in the United States. Concierge medicine focuses on each client individually, regardless of the time spent in the office. One physician typically treats no more than 900 clients, in contrast to traditional general practitioners, who have up to thousands of patients in their portfolio. The Prague clinic plans to reduce the number to 650 clients per physician and thus offer an even more personal approach.
For details visit: Conciergemedicine.cz