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Old 07-17-2014, 09:19 PM  
HonestChieffan HonestChieffan is offline
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WalMart testing Doctor/health offering.

Walmart is getting into the healthcare game.

A clinic will open in Sumter and Florence at the end of July that could drive down healthcare costs across the community.

If they’re successful, the concept could spread.

“You hear articles and news stories all the time about how the cost of healthcare has skyrocketed, and it has. It’s really a problem, and finding smart ways to get the cost down is important,” said Dr. Jason Leonard with Colonial Family Practice.

Across town, you’d expect family physician Dr. Jason Leonard to fear the big-box competition, but that isn’t the case.

“I really don’t think so,” Leonard said. “I think that it’s a great thing that they’re opening. I think that it really can take some pressure off the emergency room. There’s so many non-emergent emergency room visits each year.”

A Walmart spokeswoman told WIS a store in Florence, South Carolina and a handful in Texas will begin the pilot project called Walmart Care Clinic.

Employees will pay just $4, customers just $40 for access to medical care from screening and vaccinations to treatment of sicknesses and even chronic conditions like high blood pressure and diabetes.

“We have a nickname for these things,” said Lynn Bailey with Lynn Bailey Associates. “We call them docs in a box. They’re actually quite good at managing diabetics and hypertension and high cholesterol.”

Bailey, a medical expert, thinks the Walmart clinics will spread as medical costs in the US continue to grow.

Total spending for healthcare reached $2.7 trillion in 2011, according to national health expenditures.

Walmart is promising a “new price position for retail health services.”

“I call it convenience care,” Bailey said. “It’s care that fits most people’s schedule. They don’t have to make an appointment.”

Back across town, Dr. Leonard is hoping the extra option will cut down on emergency room wait times too.

“When you go to the emergency room for a non-emergent visit, it increases the wait-time,” Leonard said. “It increases resources and it also delays people who truly have an emergency from seeking care.”

Walmart says the Care Clinics will accept insurance including Medicare. You can pay with cash, credit or checks.

According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, these clinics will also accept Medicaid.

Nurse practitioners will be able to write prescriptions.

The Sumter clinic is set to open on July 31
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:24 PM   #2
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:27 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
Nurse practitioners will be able to write prescriptions.
title is innacurate. They will offer mid-level prescribers who are neither doctors nor physicians.

this is not some revolutionary practice.
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:29 PM   #4
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title is innacurate. They will offer mid-level prescribers who are neither doctors nor physicians.

this is not some revolutionary practice.
How is it inaccurate? There won't be doctors on-site?
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:34 PM   #5
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How is it inaccurate? There won't be doctors on-site?
According to the article they will be using nurse practictioners, not physicians (doctors). If it is not yet clear to you, nurse practictioners are not doctors although they are health care providers.

It is cost prohibitive to use physicians in such a manner. The healthcare industry is moving to where mid-levels take care of the simple stuff while primary care physicians and internists work as hospitalists. Private medical groups across the country are being bought out by corporations (such as hospitals) for similar cost reasons.
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:36 PM   #6
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Our HyVee is opening a health clinic soon. It's interesting.
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:38 PM   #7
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Our HyVee is opening a health clinic soon. It's interesting.
I have no problem with it because it increases access to care. I just hope such providers understand the limited scope of their practice.
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Old 07-17-2014, 09:54 PM   #8
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Looks like a great move by WM. They expand benefits to employees, they have direct marketing link to their pharmacy, and are exppnding on the success Walgreen has had with the same approach. They take the load off hospitals and the unnecessary trips to ERs.

ObamaCare will accelerate the move to care provided by nurse practitioners instead of docs and seems like WalMart sees the opportunity to be the low cost provider.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by planetdoc View Post
According to the article they will be using nurse practictioners, not physicians (doctors). If it is not yet clear to you, nurse practictioners are not doctors although they are health care providers.

It is cost prohibitive to use physicians in such a manner. The healthcare industry is moving to where mid-levels take care of the simple stuff while primary care physicians and internists work as hospitalists. Private medical groups across the country are being bought out by corporations (such as hospitals) for similar cost reasons.
I know nurse practitioners aren't doctors. I was tipped off by their title--nurse practitioner.

You may be right about a lack of a Dr. on-site, but the article was hardly clear about that. This is also an HCF thread, which greatly increases the chances of an inaccurate thread title, but it is not clear.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:25 PM   #10
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I have seen nurse practitioners in various settings. I find that I often prefer them over the doctors. They tend to have better people skills.
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Old 07-17-2014, 10:36 PM   #11
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Perhaps WalMart can help avoid some of the consequences of ObamaCare. Even the NYT is starting to report on the outlook under ObamaCare and its not pretty...


The Grey Lady Punctures Obamacare Myth


It’s amazing what the Obamacare rollout has done to the debate over the law: The once-popular argument that we can cut costs by expanding access is collapsing. At the NYT‘s Upshot, Aaron Carroll notes that in prevention, emergency care, and invasive procedures, expanding access to insurance makes health care more expensive, not less:

Researchers in Michigan compared the prevalence of surgery in Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York both before and after Massachusetts went to universal insurance in 2007. They found that expanding coverage was associated with a more than 9 percent increase in discretionary operations and a 4.5 percent increase in nondiscretionary ones. They estimated, based on their results, that the A.C.A. could lead to more than 465,000 additional discretionary surgical procedures within a few years from now.

Finally, it is a common misconception that prevention always saves money. It is true that there are certain interventions that are cost-saving, such as childhood immunizations and newborn screening. But these are relatively rare. A review of preventive measures in the New England Journal of Medicine found that less than 20 percent of 279 preventive measures saved money. The rest resulted in varying amounts of increased spending.

We’re glad the NYT is putting these points before the public. If the liberal press had been more willing to engage with ideas like this during the 2010 Obamacare debate, we might have come away with a better and more sustainable system. As it is, ugly struggles and hard choices loom ahead. Health care costs seem locked onto a course that will reduce quality and limit access for millions of people, with Obamacare being a net drag on the system.
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Old 07-18-2014, 07:43 AM   #12
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Sounds like the evil WalMart actually has a good idea here...WTF???
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:34 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by HonestChieffan View Post
Perhaps WalMart can help avoid some of the consequences of ObamaCare. Even the NYT is starting to report on the outlook under ObamaCare and its not pretty...


The Grey Lady Punctures Obamacare Myth


It’s amazing what the Obamacare rollout has done to the debate over the law: The once-popular argument that we can cut costs by expanding access is collapsing. At the NYT‘s Upshot, Aaron Carroll notes that in prevention, emergency care, and invasive procedures, expanding access to insurance makes health care more expensive, not less:

Researchers in Michigan compared the prevalence of surgery in Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York both before and after Massachusetts went to universal insurance in 2007. They found that expanding coverage was associated with a more than 9 percent increase in discretionary operations and a 4.5 percent increase in nondiscretionary ones. They estimated, based on their results, that the A.C.A. could lead to more than 465,000 additional discretionary surgical procedures within a few years from now.

Finally, it is a common misconception that prevention always saves money. It is true that there are certain interventions that are cost-saving, such as childhood immunizations and newborn screening. But these are relatively rare. A review of preventive measures in the New England Journal of Medicine found that less than 20 percent of 279 preventive measures saved money. The rest resulted in varying amounts of increased spending.

We’re glad the NYT is putting these points before the public. If the liberal press had been more willing to engage with ideas like this during the 2010 Obamacare debate, we might have come away with a better and more sustainable system. As it is, ugly struggles and hard choices loom ahead. Health care costs seem locked onto a course that will reduce quality and limit access for millions of people, with Obamacare being a net drag on the system.
It's shocking that they're finally coming around on these things that conservatives were warning about years ago. It won't stop democrats from pushing for ever greater "preventative care" mandates regardless of cost implications though.
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:39 AM   #14
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:45 AM   #15
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There won't be physicians at these sites. No different than Walgreens and CVS. And no it won't reduce the pressure on ER's. Walmart/CVS/Walgreens close their urgent care between 8p and 9pm in most areas. The ER will still take the brunt those patients.
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