GP NOW – Our Story
In late 2010 a small group of GP’s, health professionals and young Irish entrepreneurs met in a hotel on the outskirts of Dublin to discuss a revolutionary new idea. This idea would provide a private option for patients at a low monthly cost, not only would this be a separation of public and private patients within GP care but it would also provide a membership option, spreading out, and in most cases, reducing the cost of GP visits. A low cost option was only one aspect, but how could we improve the current patient experience?
Let the market research begin….
When assessing the choices available to private patients we found that some of the main concerns were;
- The cost of the visit (ranging from €40-€70)
- Waiting room times
- Not being seen at your ‘pre-booked’ appointment time
- Additional charges in certain cases
- Choice of male/female GP’s
- Being seen by a replacement/temporary GP
- Communication difficulties
So how could we provide a better service and in-turn answer the concerns of our potential patients?
Firstly, because our service is offered solely to private patients and not a mixture of public and private, we would naturally have 60-70% less patients in our waiting room. This would also increase the likelihood of being seen at a prearranged appointment time. Include to that an advanced patient management system and; the appointment you request is the appointment you receive.
The cost aspect, we feel, is self-explanatory and also answers the additional charges concern. The next step was to take on full time experienced male and female GP’s, experienced and registered in Ireland under the Irish Medical Council. All GP’s are interviewed and screened for suitability to ensure a strong doctor/patient relationship.
In summary we would now provide private patients with what they were looking for and answer the age old issues within the private GP market.
Our First Clinic:
In October 2011 our first clinic opened. GP NOW Sandyford, situated beside Dublin’s private medical hub at the Beacon Court. The response has been phenomenal, private patients from Arklow to Malahide; Kildare to Dun Laoghaire are joining “The Revolution in GP Care”. Our new service has even caught the attention of the Irish Times who wrote an article about the service as a welcome alternative. Against the odds, in a recession, during an economic meltdown; a group of enthusiastic, motivated and driven Irish entrepreneurs have made the impossible, possible. The beginning of a positive change in primary health care is upon us and which we feel will drastically reduce the need for secondary care for all of our GP NOW patients.
Our Second Clinic:
With the continued success of our Sandyford Clinic, in August 2012 we proudly announced the opening of our second clinic, GP NOW Swords. North Street in Swords was to be the location, just off the main street and located beside the credit union. Providing a service to our North Dublin patients was paramount in our expansion plans, with a clinic now situated at either end of the county. With the clinics based just of M50 exits, we were now providing patients with more accessibility and another option for those based more centrally or just outside the county. The demand for membership having increased greatly since our humble beginnings, planning for our future clinics is already progressing.