Maybe you've had this experience. You make a doctor's appointment around your lunch hour but the doctor gets behind with other patients and there you are, sitting in the waiting room for two hours or longer. But what can you do? Well, there's a new trend that might fix the problem, but it's gonna cost you.
Many doctors, overloaded with patients and dissatisfied with how managed care has cut their fees, are forming what are called **boutique** or **concierge** practices. They limit the number of patients they see and charge a retainer fee ranging from several hundred to several thousand dollars a year. This generally covers one or two yearly physicals, preventive health care plans and the promise of on-time appointments. The insurance company picks up the rest.
This type of health care, called "VIP Medicine", has evolved from millionaire athletes and celebrities who see the doctor when it suits **their** schedule. Now regular folks who think their time is just as valuable - and have the money to spend - see these plans as just the ticket. Some services can be as high as a $10,000 initiation fee with a $5,000 annual membership.
That gets you day-long physical exams and appointments to see the top docs in the field, no waiting--and they'll even take you there in a limo.