When patients enter the plastic surgery practice of Dr. Richard Beil for an initial consultation, they are often surprised to be meeting with the specialist who will perform their procedure.
Dr. Beil and his partners at the Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery in Ann Arbor value that first interaction. It allows them to get to know their patients and talk over their motivations for considering a surgery.
“It’s a meeting that is about building trust and getting to know someone,” Dr. Beil said. “It’s an opportunity to make sure the patient isn’t thinking one way and the doctor is thinking a different way.
“We can talk about elements of a surgery that really should only come from the doctor performing the procedure and discuss decisions that will impact the patient before and after it is completed.”
The Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery charges $125 for the ability for a patient to build a bond with the practice’s doctors, but it’s a business model that is changing at some offices.
A marketing ploy offering a free consultation is becoming commonplace in the field, but it’s not a notion that Beil and his partners believe fits their goals of holistic care and being invested in their patients.
“It’s a way to get people in the door,” Beil says frankly.
Patients, once inside of competitor’s pratices using the gimmick, rarely, if ever, see doctors. Instead they are often talking with office staff members who record basic information, but lack the qualification and expertise that Beil and his partners have to guide the conversation.
At the Center for Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery, Beil prefers to have a comprehensive look at patients and there’s no sales pitch or pressure to schedule a surgery.
When a patient makes the decision to move forward, the consultation fee is deducted from the cost of the procedure, Beil says.
“We want the patients to understand that they are an individual and we tailor the procedure to their particular needs,” Beil said. “I’m passionate about this work and we are committed to doing it the right way.”