"I'm in the office seeing patients about 10% to 20% of the time, and the rest of the time I see patients in their homes," says Dr. Schleider, a board-certified family practice physician who is based in Manhattan.
With black bag in hand, Schleider is a throwback to an era when physicians had time to get to know their clients personally and patients didn't feel rushed through their appointments. But this doctor delivers tradition with a modern twist, for along with the classic bag, he arrives at his patients' homes armed with the latest medications and equipment, including portable X-ray and EKG machines and a laptop he uses to view radiology films. Dr. Schleider takes customer service to an even higher level by encouraging his patients to contact him directly, 24/7, for routine and emergency care. "I treat my patients like family. They have my cell phone number and can call me anytime," he says. Dr. Schleider is among a growing number of physicians who are turning to concierge, or boutique, medicine as a way of improving the health care experience for both their patients and themselves. "I wanted to not see 50 patients a day, be happy as a physician and make a good living, so I opted for a boutique practice," he explains.