What is health care, and where did we go wrong? The answer, according to Brian Kolender, M.D., prevention specialist and board-certified internal medicine physician, is that we’ve become a “sick care” society — meaning the system is set up to treat a disease process only once it has taken hold. By the time symptoms become evident, it can be too late. Unfortunately, for some people there are no symptoms, and cardiac arrest is the first and final warning.
With the latest and most profound advances in technology now allowing the ability to define and diagnose medical issues or a developing disease at a stage where it’s preventable, how do we reinvent and build the relationship between patient and doctor in the primary care area? “Time is of the essence,” Dr. Kolender says. “I realized, as a doctor, I needed to spend much more time with my patients in order to delve below the surface and look at the underlying, real problems that most definitely could have been missed in our current system.”
The new, reinvented private practice engages the patient by allowing longer doctor visits; access to tests not currently covered by insurance, which look more thoroughly at the panorama of contributing factors that lead to disease; and a more personalized relationship with your doctor.
This concierge-style practice is now defining the protocol for avoiding the catastrophic diseases of our time. Coronary artery disease, stroke, diabetes, and even Alzheimer’s can be completely avoided. All it takes is finally deciding to engage with a practice and a doctor who’s available 24/7 and is committed to prevention.
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