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Making House Calls

Making House Calls
Greg Schaber

Dr. Douglas A. Magenheim’s patients always know how to reach him. And that’s exactly the way he wants it. Last March, the 1997 M.B.A. graduate opened My Doctor, a boutique medical practice in Greater Cincinnati that guarantees physician access 24 hours a day, seven days a week in exchange for an annual $1,500 fee.

A physician for 12 years, Magenheim began working in quality improvement and physician management after receiving his M.B.A. His new practice “is the culmination of realizing things needed to be done differently.” Patients can come in and spend as long as they need, or can call and discuss issues as they need to, not when the doctor can fit them in.

In typical medical practices, he says, it isn’t unusual to see 3,500 patients competing for a doctor’s attention. In contrast, Magenheim is accepting just 700-800 patients, meaning they get more focused care. “I’m now able to manage the health care system for patients as opposed to letting the system manage them.”

While there appears to be growing interest in this type of approach nationally, Magenheim is on the front lines. He estimates that fewer than 40 physicians across the country work this way.

Magenheim has promised his patients he won’t take a vacation until his practice grows enough to add a second physician. It is, he says, a question of commitment.

“My dad was an internist, and this style of practice allows me to get to my patients the way he did in the old days.”

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