Specialist Medical Centers can be categorized as either single- or multi-specialty, depending on the type of care that each physician provides. They can be either a freestanding facility or hospital based.
Single-specialty practices offer one specific type of care, like internal medicine or optometry, provided by two or more physicians. Advantages to this type of group practice setting is that there are fewer competing interests allowing for faster decision making, easier to share call coverage between physicians, less overhead, and incomes tend to be higher.
Multi-specialty group practices combine their expertise to offer many types of medical specialty care all within the same facility. There will typically be a mixture of primary care physicians and related specialists, such as surgical and internal medicine specialists. Advantages to this type of group practice is that specialists can receive direct referrals from primary care physicians, while primary care physicians can serve as a reliable resource for consults and can offer continuity in care.
Physician groups are important because they can serve many different patient needs within the community. Multi-specialty physician groups, in particular, offer one convenient place where patients can go to receive many different types of care. Physician group providers are also likely to have regularly scheduled check-ins with their patients, which gives them an opportunity to help maintain and improve population health within their respective communities.