Dec 4, 2023 - Business

Concierge doctors bring house calls back in Tampa Bay

Matthew Beil gets a home visit from Khalid Saeed, aka the Tampa Bay Concierge Doctor. Photo: Selene San Felice/Axios

Matthew Beil looks out at the city of St. Pete from his 26th-story apartment. "Entourage" is playing on his TV as he pulls two Fiji waters out of the fridge.

The intrigue: He's not entertaining a friend. He's at a doctor's appointment.

State of play: Beil is a patient of Khalid Saeed, aka the Tampa Bay Concierge Doctor, one of thousands of doctors practicing concierge medicine around the country in an industry merging old fashioned house calls with new telemedicine technology.

The big picture: The concierge-medicine industry was valued at $6.7 billion this year and is expected to hit $13.3 billion by 2030.

Flashback: When Beil moved to the area from Delaware in 2018, he searched for the area's best doctor and called Saeed's office.

  • To his surprise, Saeed himself picked up the phone. Beil would be Saeed's first patient in his new practice.
  • For a pretty (out of pocket) penny, Beil would get 24/7 access to his doctor including FaceTime and texts on his personal cell as well as home visits.

Zoom in: Saeed now sees a rotation of about 250 patients and he's since hired an administrative assistant.

  • Most concierge doctors can see anywhere from 300 to 600 patients, he said, but he likes to keep a smaller clientele to give each patient more time and attention.

Between the lines: Like many offering the luxury service, Saeed doesn't take insurance.

  • Before starting his concierge service, Saeed was an ER and internal medicine doctor. Most patients he saw in the ER could have been seen by their primary care doctor, but they either didn't have time to go during office hours or weren't sure what an emergency was.
  • Now, since he doesn't have to charge per visit or procedure, Saeed said he can give patients the care they deserve.

Yes, but: He still recommends patients have health insurance to see specialists and in case of emergencies.

How it works: Saeed's patients pay a monthly flat fee, with discounts for students and businesses, ranging from $150 to $800 per month.

  • The most expensive plan gets you four house calls per year and 24/7 access to Saeed via his personal cellphone.

What they're saying: Beil described himself as a hypochondriac before becoming Saeed's client. Thanks to "the mini medical school of Dr. Saeed," as he calls it, that anxiety is gone.

  • Being able to text and FaceTime his doctor meant not having to worry about his health or frantically Googling his symptoms to see if he needs to go to the emergency room.
  • "It's worth every penny," Beil said.
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