UM is piloting a new, membership fee based health management program called "Victors Care". Basaically, the premise is that by paying an annual premium you will see a network of doctors who attend fewer patients and can offer more personalized service. Benefits are listed, on their website, as reduced office waits, faster scheduling, 24/7 physician access and others.
However, several high level UM medicine admins are pushing back on the service for several reasons...chief of which is their premise that this program will allow people to "jump ahead in line" of others.
Fee based subscription medicine is a growing trend in the US as doctors are looking to shore up sliding profits due to decreases in contract payouts for many services.
Detailed article in the Michigan daily on this issue
"Michigan Medicine at the University of Michigan is currently launching Victors Care, a concierge medical care model aiming to deliver tailored health care access to a limited number of patients. These patients will receive specialized, convenient and optimized care with purchase of an annual membership fee to cover primary care services without copays or deductibles.
Though concierge medicine has been practiced at a number of health facilities nationwide — including Michigan Medicine competitors like Stanford Health Care, Virginia Mason and the UNC Physicians Network Carolina Continuity of Care Program — the University will institute the care approach for the first time in April.
Mary Masson, institutional positioning director at Michigan Medicine, said Victors Care is one example of ways Michigan Medicine aims to improve medical care.
“Victors Care is a pilot program, developed after requests from patients for a service similar to what exists at institutions across the country,” Masson wrote in a statement to The Daily. “This is just one of a number of ways we're seeking to improve access to and efficiency of care we provide. Others include use of e-visits when appropriate, opening a new facility in west Ann Arbor and the planned opening of another, in Brighton this fall, which will significantly expand our capacity and access.”
However, this concierge medicine program — often referred to as boutique or retainer medicine — has drawn criticism from University physicians."
Credit: Michigan Daily, 3/7/2018, Author: Alexa St. John