Blog | Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Concierge practices reviewed as insurance

Maryland is proposing to regulate concierge medical practices as a type of insurance, prompting at least one internal medicine group to halt its plans to stop accepting private insurance, the Baltimore Sun reported.

Charter Internal Medicine of Columbia, Md., announced it will continue business as usual in a Dear Patient letter on its Web site. The group is made up of a College fellow and four members.

Concierge practitioners in other states have told ACP Internist the management method, in which doctors charge a flat fee to a limited panel in exchange for complete patient access, lets doctors practice medicine the way they see fit. But the method has even drawn fire from other doctors, who feel that limiting the number of patients harms healthcare access for the rest of the community. Maryland is the first time a state has stepped in to review the legality of concierge coverage.