Retail Clinic Updates: Check Waiting Times Online, and Docs Want Some of the Growing Business
1. At Family Quick Care clinics operating in Illinois (either next to a Wal-Mart or inside Meijer's Stores), you can now check wait times online (currently no wait at 2 of the 3 clinics listed).
2. CHICAGO TRIBUNE -- A suburban Chicago doctors group is resuscitating the physician-staffed model of retail medicine. Physicians Prompt Care Centers said it will open a clinic this month inside the Jewel-Osco in the Chicago suburb of Orland Park that will be staffed by physicians.
It's the first retail health clinic in the Chicago area for Jewel-Osco parent Supervalu Inc., which has 14 retail clinics in its stores elsewhere in the country. Though the number of retail health clinics has grown to more than 1,100 nationally, most are staffed by nurse practitioners, who are paid less than doctors. Just a half-dozen clinics are staffed by physicians.
MP: About the second story, the docs probably figure that "if you can't beat them (retail health clinics), join them." With more than a thousand retail clinics operating nationally, think of all of the millions (billions?) of dollars of revenue and profits being diverted away from traditional physician-staffed offices and clinics, to nurse practitioner-staffed retail heath care clinics.
Hey, maybe competitive market forces will solve the problem of rising health care costs quicker, and more effectively, than any grandiose form of government-run Obamacare?