What goes around, comes back around

Remember the days when a house visit by a physician was the primary way of caring for a patient?

The service seems to be making a comeback. It’s not just something they do in France, either (for those of you who have seen Sicko).

I have come across two websites (one–this service seems really cool–, two) in the past few days of physicians who are more than willing to make house calls (after seeing this story in the New York Times in September). For those types of illnesses that don’t require significant medical technology it can be a great thing. The issue, as always, comes with cost. In the (mostly) free market that is the United States health care system, that means those who are able pay for the house visits and individual attention, do so.

House visits are a great idea. We just need more physicians to start. And that means lowering the cost so that demand is greater. And that means the reimbursement function needs to be completely rethought. And that means…

I appreciate the innovation and would like to see the model continue to expand.

Virgin Health Care?

If any you have ever flown Virgin Air across the pond, you know how great flying can be.

Well, (arguably?) the coolest business innovator of our time is up to his old tricks. Richard Branson has introduced Virgin Healthcare to the United Kingdom. The business will basically manage NHS primary care services and provide complimentary services alongside.

Could we see an incarnation in the U.S.?

Hat tip, WSJ Health Blog