Report discusses retail clinics' entry into chronic disease management game

NEW YORK An article featured on MedPageToday.com picks up on the expansion of clinic services offered at retail health clinics, underscoring the importance of nurse practitioners and entry into the role in chronic disease management.

"We're evolving our clinic offerings, from episodic treatment to looking at how do we get more chronic disease management, how do we do more prevention, how do we do more screening?" Sandra Ryan, chief nurse practitioner officer for Take Care Health Systems, was quoted as saying.

The entry into chronic disease management is no surprise, as the roles of retail clinics and their nurse practitioners continues to grow. As the rate of such chronic conditions as diabetes is projected to double by 2034, the venture is much needed.

"Knowing there's an unmet need for treatment and management of chronic conditions in the U.S., and knowing that the cost is increasing, we think retail clinics are on the forefront to meet that need," Ryan added.

Some examples of this venture have been noted over the past year. In February, Walgreens announced it would offer customers free blood glucose testing, an initiative that was supported by talk show host Oprah Winfrey.

Retail clinics first came on the scene in the middle of the last decade, and there are now some 1,200 of them operating in 32 states, according to the Convenient Care Association.