Retail Clinics and Their Impact On Healthcare

December 4, 2018 Jeanette Stern

Stores like Walgreens, Walmart, and CVS have made a bold entrance into healthcare, and their services are sending many hospital and health systems scrambling for new business strategies. Complaints are common about wait times and high prices in hospitals and clinics. Many people appreciate retail clinics for a variety of reasons, but especially for the lower pricing and convenience. 

While an appointment with your primary healthcare provider has to be scheduled weeks in advance, you can always visit a retail health clinic at CVS or Walgreens and receive immediate service. And you’ll always know what to can expect when it comes to the price. 

People today are not only pressed for time, they have come to expect fast turnaround and convenience. Packages arrive within a couple of days—or even the same day. Services that used to take days or weeks can now be accomplished in hours. The winning competitor today is often the one who can meet the demand fastest, whether they are delivering services, food, or even loans. 

Retail health clinics have become popular and attractive to the multitaskers and the parents who are always pressed for time. The time-crunched mom or dad can accomplish many things in one day and not worry about constantly getting out of the car. A retail health clinic is a goal-oriented setting. Parents who have young children are frequent users of retail health clinics, but such clinics are visited by all age groups, especially during back-to-school or flu season. . It can also depend on the time of year, whether it is back to school season or flu season. 

There will be no need to search for your full medical history when a patient makes plans to visit a retail health clinic. However, you should be prepared; patients should always be prepared to tell the retailer’s clinician about any prescriptions that you are taking. If you visit a retail health clinic to receive a vaccination, bring your shot records for updating; otherwise, be sure to bring the paperwork you are given to your doctor’s office so that that any vaccinations you receive can be recorded. 

Benefits of Retail Health Clinics

What if you come down with a common cold or a stomach virus and the doctor's office has no available appointments? When you visit a retail health clinic, you will often have the same experience you might have had in a doctor’s office, in less time and with less frustration. In addition to the convenience of retail health clinics, some of the other benefits include

  • Lower prices than an urgent care center or emergency room
  • Availability of electronic health records (EHR)
  • Acceptance of cash and insurance
  • Available appointment times
  • Quick consultations

Due to the popularity of retail health clinics, many hospitals are beginning to recognize the need to introduce a lower-cost alternative. Hospitals and health facilities that can develop relationships with retail providers will become more patient-centric and create better outcomes.

For more information on retail health clinics and how the success of these clinics has impacted the healthcare industry, please do not hesitate to contact us today.

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