BMHG Westrook Concierge Medicine HERO


What Exactly is Concierge Medicine? And is it Right for You?

Baptist Health Boca Raton Regional Hospital

More and more physicians have incorporated concierge medicine into their practices over the past 20 years but not everyone understands exactly what concierge medicine means or how it works.


“Concierge medicine is a practice model of internal medicine in which a physician limits the number of patients they take in order to provide a more personalized physician-patient experience,” says Raymond Westbrook, D.O., a concierge medicine physician with Baptist Health Concierge Medicine | Boca Raton the first hospital-based concierge medicine program in Palm Beach County.


Raymond Westbrook, D.O., a concierge medicine physician with Baptist Health Concierge Medicine | Boca Raton


Dr. Westbrook, who specializes in internal medicine, prevention and wellness, hormone replacement therapy and functional medicine, explains the advantages for patients enrolled in concierge medicine programs.


Improved access

“In order to ensure personalized care, our practice is limited to 425 patients per physician. Therefore, our patients have greater access to us and we’re able to offer same-day appointments up until a certain time each day, or appointments the very next day,” says Dr. Westbrook. “They also get more time with us during their appointments and can reach us after hours 24/7 via email or answering service.”


Other benefits for concierge medicine patients include being able to have lab work done in the office rather than having to go to a retail lab diagnostics center, and a staff that’s eager to assist them with everything from filling prescriptions to navigating the often-complex health care system.


To ensure timely treatment for their patients, concierge medicine physicians also help expedite diagnostic testing and physician specialist referrals. “We’re able to advocate for our patients and stay in close communication with their specialists,” Dr. Westbrook says.


Both he and his colleague admit their patients to Boca Raton Regional Hospital/Baptist Health and coordinate their inpatient care, not a hospitalist. “Having your personal doctor as the admitting physician makes for improved quality and continuity of care,” says Dr. Westbrook.


Concierge medicine isn't for everyone, Dr. Westbrook admits, and some people may not find value in paying for improved access. However, he says, it is growing in popularity, particularly among working professionals and elderly patients.


“Our patients currently range in age from 21 to 103. Many of them are busy professionals who enroll because it offers the flexibility to see us in a timely fashion that fits their schedule,” Dr. Westbrook notes. “And many are seniors with chronic or complex health issues who value being able to have us spend extended time with them so we can really delve into their condition and see them as frequently as needed.”


Increased satisfaction

Aaron Klein, D.O., concierge medicine director at Baptist Health Concierge Medicine | Boca Raton who specializes in preventive care, geriatrics and sports medicine, says that many people are becoming “frustrated and disenfranchised” by today’s health care system and are attracted by the convenience, timeliness and quality care that concierge medicine can offer.


Aaron Klein, D.O., concierge medicine director at Baptist Health Concierge Medicine | Boca Raton


“Patients are spending a significant amount of money for their health insurance but are often unable to see their physician or provider when needed due to lack of accessibility,” says Dr. Klein. “As a result, many of them often settle for urgent care centers, emergency rooms or mid-level providers and are thus not receiving continuity of care, which is essential, especially for those with chronic health issues.”


Dr. Klein points out that the concierge medicine model at Baptist Health many times has led to the rapid diagnosis and treatment of life-threatening disorders and facilitated timely and appropriate treatment for his patients.


Personalized care

Although concierge medicine has been viewed by some as “express lane medicine” for those who can afford it, Dr. Klein says it fills a definite need and leads to increased satisfaction for both patient and physician. It fosters a strong physician-patient relationship, he says, and enables him to provide higher-quality, more personalized care.


“Medicine was never meant to be a volume business – it’s meant to be personalized and caring, with ample time for the physician to get to know a patient and their concerns and to help them find solutions to their health care problems,” Dr. Klein says. “With internal medicine especially, quality trumps quantity.”


Dr. Klein acknowledges the common misconception that concierge medicine is only for the wealthy, but he says that is not the case. In his practice, patients pay $2,500 a year for the privilege of 24/7 access, a fee that is not covered by insurance.


“Patients pay for their health insurance but the quality of care that is being delivered within the constraints of today’s healthcare system is failing many of them,” notes Dr. Klein. “Our concierge medicine model allows us to maximize the quality of care we provide to each and every patient. Our patients find they can afford the expense if they prioritize their health.”


A second Baptist Health Concierge Medicine location will be opening this December at 1500 San Remo Avenue, Suite 150, in Coral Gables, according to representatives with Baptist Health.


Healthcare that Cares

With internationally renowned centers of excellence, 12 hospitals, more than 27,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 200 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties, Baptist Health is an anchor institution of the South Florida communities we serve.

Language Preference / Preferencia de idioma

I want to see the site in English

Continue In English

Quiero ver el sitio en Español

Continuar en español