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Posted 08/29/2019 in Category 1

Is House Call Doctor Making a Comeback?


Is House Call Doctor Making a Comeback?

The concept of house call doctor is undergoing a revolutionary evolution in today’s world. In the 1930s, 40% of patient-doctor interactions were through house calls however in the 1980s the rate had declined to 1%. 

From a patient’s view, calling a house call doctor is more appealing because one does not have to skip work, or wait in traffic or hospital queue in the hospital waiting room. Summoning a house call doctor means you do not have to drag your sick body out of the house to consult a doctor whose prescription is to get back in bed. 

Currently, a lot of patients are seeking a personalized medical consultation experience and they want a physician they can relate to, one who cares and can offer them time and compassion. 

From a doctor’s perspective, house call doctor is also appealing because it offers a more fulfilling patient interaction and the ability to evaluate the social state of their patients. 

The health care system also benefits from the house call doctor program. The Journal of the American Geriatrics Society indicated last year that 722 senior adults who enrolled in the house call doctor program spent $8,477 less on Medicare expenses than those who were not members of the house call doctor program thus enabling Medicare to make enormous savings. 

In addition, the house call enrollees have experienced 10% less emergency room visits, 23% fewer consultations and 9% less hospitalizations due to the house call doctor program. Despite the advantages of the house call doctor program, there are managerial barriers to implementing house calls because not all medical problems should be handled domestically. Sometimes the hospital setting is the best because the doctor will have the whole team of professionals there as well as medical equipment that cannot be set up at home. 

With the increase in technology, telemedicine is used with the house call doctor program to decrease the number of hospital readmissions and improving the quality of home care. 

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