Nevadan at Work: Family doctor disavows insurance, turns to concierage medicine

By JENNIFER ROBISON
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL

Dr. William Pierce needed to try something new.

As a family doctor, Pierce grew tired of today’s standard care model, with its insurance-based billing practices and its big patient counts.

So six years ago, Pierce turned to concierge medicine. He no longer accepts insurance, instead billing patients directly for an annual membership that comes with routine office visits, phone consultations and on-site fills of prescriptions for antibiotics and cough medicines.

Patients even have after-hours access to Pierce via cellphone or email.

Pierce says ditching insurance lets him be the doctor he trained to be, playing a more active role in his patients’ cases: He has just 250 patients, about a tenth of the load of a traditional family practice.

Plus, freeing himself from the tangled insurance web has given Pierce time to treat patients for free at the Volunteers in Medicine of Southern Nevada Clinic at 4770 Harrison Drive. The group, which held its fifth annual charity ball at The Venetian on Saturday night, provides free medical care for the working uninsured or the unemployed.

Question: Why did you choose medicine?

Answer: It’s the stereotypical answer. It was an idealistic thing. When I was eight years old, I thought it was what I wanted to do. The career brochure looked good. In college, I got to look seriously at whether I really wanted to be a doctor, doing the rotations and seeing the lifestyle. I originally wanted to go into microvascular surgery, but I didn’t want to spend every day in the hospital. I considered emergency medicine for the variety, but I changed to family practice. I like to be my own boss, so I wanted my own practice. And I like the fact that people trust me to solve their problems at a personal level.

find out why Dr. William Pierce switched to concierge medical practice here. 

About Concierge Medicine Journal

Concierge Medicine Journal (CMJ) curates breaking concierge medicine news, and editorial opinion on a wide variety of topics relevant to the practice of Concierge Medicine.

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