Spotlight on clinic model gets brighter as accessibility, lower cost proves to be universal healthcare need
MinuteClinic president and SVP/associate chief medical officer of CVS Caremark, Andrew Sussman, attended two separate healthcare events in London last week to discuss how MinuteClinic is improving care and access at substantially lower cost.
This is important because, regardless of whether a country has universal health care or not, someone has to pay for it, and accessibility can still be an issue. Interestingly, a British supermarket began testing the concept of an in-store physician-staffed clinic back in 2008 in an effort to improve access. A key reason: Its supermarkets are often situated in a convenient location with public transport links and ample parking.
The reality is that there is more than one way to define access and convenience. However, money is money and, as half of Europe implements austerity measures and many other nations consider it, paying less for healthcare is one need that is absolutely universal about healthcare — the entire world over.
Meanwhile, the clinic movement continues to gain traction here in the United States as Target plans to open 14 new clinics this year. There are currently 54 Target Clinic locations in six states and the 2013 expansion will bring the total number to 68. Construction on 12 Target Clinic locations is slated to begin on May 28, with grand openings scheduled for Aug. 18. Two more locations, one in Illinois and one in Baltimore, are currently under construction and will open in October.