Dear Streeterville Internal Medicine patients:
After sixteen years in practice and six years in solo private practice, I am excited to announce that I will be transitioning the structure of my practice to a concierge/personalized care model. This decision has been made after considerable thought and planning.
I truly love having the privilege to serve as the primary care physician for you–my patients. I enjoy getting to know you and your families, and providing you with the highest level of quality and service possible. My work gives me great satisfaction.
Unfortunately, I am finding work in the current traditional model to be one that is not sustainable for me long term. I know you may have questions and concerns pertaining to your health, and they deserve to be fully and completely addressed. What is important to you, is important to me. I take pride in taking time to come up with the right diagnosis for you, rather than prescribing medicine or a test based on a few initial statements or observations. I like to be very thorough in understanding what is going on with you, both at our visits and in-between visits. Unfortunately, insurance companies do not compensate for the extra time this commitment to my patients requires, and the alternative of seeing more and more patients at a faster and faster rate, does not align with the way I want to practice medicine.
I have been considering a transition to a concierge practice model for some time–especially after hearing colleagues who have made the switch tell me how it has improved their ability to care for their patients. By limiting my practice size, I will have more time to provide quality care services to each of my patients, and all patients will have greater accessibility to me via office phone, my cell number, the practice’s patient portal, as well as email. Reducing the number of patients in my practice will also allow me to see you for visits when you need me, and to spend more time with you when you need my attention. My goal is to provide preventive care in order to keep you out of the hospital and in good health. However, if you are hospitalized, this new model will allow me to better coordinate your care with the doctors in the hospital and with the specialists involved in your care. I will provide extended services to patients in crisis and to those with family and health concerns, or those who may be making important life decisions.
Recent events in my own life have spurred me to make this transition now. As you know, I recently took some time for medical leave. My illness has been treated with a degree of success I had only hoped for, and I benefited greatly from the focused and expanded attention of my own physicians. Having been on the other side of the stethoscope, so to speak, I now wish to provide the same type of concentrated attention to my patients that I received from my own physicians. This transition to concierge medicine will allow me to accomplish that goal.
In order to make the transition to this new model of care, the number of patients that I will see in my practice must be reduced to approximately 500 patients (currently I have more than six times that number), and the patients that join my new practice will be charged a membership fee annually in order to remain in the practice. Materials describing the details of my new concierge practice are listed on the Services & Features and About Us > FAQ tabs.
I realize that making decisions about your health care requires careful consideration. My new concierge practice may not be viable for all of my patients. Enrollment in the new practice will be limited, and it is being offered on a first-come, first-serve basis. Securing a spot involves a signed “Patient Services Contract” and “Financial Agreement” as well as payment. If you are interested in this next step, this paperwork can be accessed by going to a secure link which has been sent to your account in the patient portal (https://health NULL.eclinicalworks NULL.com/streetervillemed). We can mail/email these documents if you prefer, upon request. I ask you to carefully consider all of the information I have provided and to let me know no later than May 31, 2017 if you would like to be part of my concierge practice or if you decline to remain with the practice.
If you decide that you are unable to join me, I will make every effort to assist you with a smooth transition to another physician, and will transfer all necessary medical records.
I will continue to see existing patients through May 31, 2017, after which I will only see those patients who are enrolled in my new concierge practice, with the exception of a few existing appointments. If you decline to join my concierge practice, but change your mind in the future, I will be happy to have you join then, subject to availability. If you have any additional questions, please call the office at 312-926-0444 or send a message through the patient portal (https://health NULL.eclinicalworks NULL.com/streetervillemed).
I look forward to continuing as your personal physician for many years to come.
Very truly yours,
Rachel O’Mara, M.D.
Streeterville Internal Medicine, LLC