Saturday, August 18, 2012
The Los Angeles Time recently reported on Retail Clinics as follows - "Retail clinics received a significant profile boost last month, when the UCLA Healthcare System inked a deal with MinuteClinics in Southern California to help promote chronic disease management and share electronic health records."
However, the use of retail clinics compared to physician offices and traditional outpatient clinics remains quite low.
"The rapid growth of retail clinics makes it clear that they are meeting a patient need. Convenience and after-hours accessibility are possible drivers of this growth. However, retail clinics make up a small share of overall visits in the outpatient setting, which include 117 million visits to emergency departments and 577 million visits to physician offices annually," reported Health Affairs, which published the Rand study.
But the study's researchers do say the clinics are serving an important role. "Retail medical clinics continue to grow rapidly and attract new segments of users," study lead author Ateev Mehrotra, M.D., an associate professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and a Rand researcher, said in an announcement. "They remain just a small part of outpatient medical care, but appear to have tapped into patients' needs."
Sixty percent of those people who have been patronizing clinics said they did not have a relationship with a primary care physician, Drug Store News reported.
The above written by By Ron Shinkman, @FierceHealth