Not all medical visits are the same

In the healthcare industry, there’s something called medical standard – it’s what patients receive for the established insurance price. This includes the basic exam and basic standard treatment options.

But of course, nothing today is as simple as the idea of the same price for the same product or same service. This is true whether you are comparing your choice of toothbrush at the store or the features you’re looking for in your car. The reality is that you can’t expect BMW to sell you a Honda. Honda makes great, reliable cars with strong, consistent, efficient engines. And while I can make the same statement about BMW, we all know the BMW is going to be priced WAY higher than the Honda. Why? Because there is a difference there.

There is a difference in medical care as well – that’s why 6-minute medicine has become a reality. As a society, we have been conditioned to expect to not pay for healthcare. So, we only want to pay our copays or coinsurance and we get upset when treatment options aren’t covered.

The difference is in the time spent by the doctor, the effort and attention, and the focus on detail and explanation. There is also a difference in the medical equipment and products the doctor offers for your care. It’s not just an ankle brace or an orthotic; it’s not just a cream or a tape. However, the insurance industry says differently. The insurance company wants you to think that each of us is the exact same and completely interchangeable. But, even the insurance companies are inconsistent with their approach. They say the doctor is the same, but the medicine isn’t. This is why we have different pricing for name brand medicine vs. generics. Yes, the generic has the same medical ingredient, but there is more to the medicine than the single chemical component – it has other components that make it distinct in its ability to penetrate, absorb, digest, or target.

As not all treatments are equal, not all doctors are alike. An office visit is more than just an office visit, so it’s to your benefit to be sure to make it worthwhile.

Ari Rubinstein DPM

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