Thursday, August 24, 2006

Thousands of Walk-In Clinics planned by Pharmacy Chains and other retailiers

In some cases even the Co-Pay is covered by the Health Insurance Companies.
These chains should add additional impetus for the adoption of interoperable EHRs. SV

Physician Assistant Jennifer Smith, left, goes over a patient enrollment form with Jessica Brost at a Minute Clinic inside a CVS pharmacy in Eagan, Minn.
By Julie Schmit, USA TODAY
BLAINE, Minn. — At 10:50 a.m., Keri Krumm walks through a CVS/Pharmacy store here to MinuteClinic, a 100-square-foot room next to the pharmacy counter.

A nurse practitioner takes her name, inputs it into a computer and sees that Krumm visited a MinuteClinic before, is allergic to penicillin and has insurance. "What are you here for?" the nurse practitioner asks.

Krumm, 34, woke with red, itchy eyes and fears pinkeye. Nurse practitioner Carole Stranger checks her eyes, ears, neck glands and temperature and asks if she's fine otherwise. "No surprise. Pinkeye is what you've got," Stranger says.

She prints an electronic prescription for eye drops, and Krumm walks 20 feet to get it filled. Krumm is in and out of the store within 20 minutes. Her insurance picks up the $49 visit. "I like that I can get in and out," Krumm says.

Retail clinics like this one are spreading nationwide as more than a dozen clinic operators plan to open thousands in stores such as CVS, Wal-Mart, Walgreens and Kerr Drug.

USA Today

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