Last week, I wrote about one problem I’ve been witnessing in the doctor’s office — about those 5-minute doctor visits.
This week, in Time magazine, I read about a possible solution. And it frightens me.
Group appointments. Yes, doctor-patient-patient-patient-patient-patient relationships.
It appears more people are seeing their doctor with another nine or so other patients in the room.
This isn’t an entirely new idea, but it’s becoming more popular than ever. Since 2005, the percentage of practices offering group visits has doubled, from 6 percent to 13 percent in 2010.
The growth is fueled by a number of problems in our health system: the often weeks of waiting for a time slot; limited face-time with the physician during a private appointment; and the ever-growing doctor shortage.
Proponents of group appointments say it’s an easy way to have more face-to-face time with your doctor.
In my mind, it’s a great way of scaring people out of the doctor’s office.