According to a story
in the Aug. 11 Boston Globe
, Tufts-New England Medical Center will open a "concierge" or "boutique" primary care practice for patients who have the $1,800 to pay annually for access to longer appointments and quieter waiting rooms. The hospital system says the extra income will help subsidize the primary care it offers to all patients regardless of ability to pay and help stem operational losses that totaled over $12 million last year. As noted here on August 5
, Washington's Commissioner of Insurance recently ruled
such arrangements illegal. The Globe
reports: "Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Massachusetts, Tufts Health Plan, and Medicare, the federal insurance program for the elderly, currently contract with concierge practices, but they are wary."