The economic downturn, looming entitlement reforms and potential budget cuts in america at the federal and state level are allowing the growth of urgent care clinics, also referred to as immediate care clinics, to substantially increase. This is recognized as a remedy to fill in the growing doctor shortage.
In accordance with industry reports and spending by large healthcare operators, the amount of Urgent Care Nearby is projected to soar in the next decade. It is estimated more and more than 8,000 urgent care clinics happen to be established – other numbers show 9,000 – and also the Urgent Care Association of America reports eight to 10 percent annual growth.
Urgent care facilities will vary than traditional hospitals and therefore are rather similar to the health clinics found in places like Walmart and Walgreen as they are usually open on evenings and weekends and treat common health problems – some immediate care clinics do offer additional services like X-rays for broken bones.
Some medical experts like to consider their urgent care clinics as after-hours doctors’ offices. Most of people who work in such a business office do note, however, patients may not reach view a board-certified doctor or some other kind of specialist.
A large proportion of walk-in clinics and urgent care offices are managed and operated by non-profit health systems, which receive donations and contributions in order to cover construction and renovation costs, patient care program support, general operations costs and equipment purchases, according to the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy’s (AHP) annual Report on Giving study.
Because of so many of such operations establishing in malls, main streets and then in major metropolitan cities, can the non-profit sector even buy them? Well, Reuters is reporting that private equity firms have been investing money into urgent care clinics in the last couple of years. While there is a huge risk in making an investment in these clinics as a result of chance of oversaturation and low insurance reimbursements, these firms work one-on-one with clinics to provide quality as well as make profit.
Rand Health found that retailers are entering the healthcare marketplace too. Big box stores, such as Target and Walmart, only had a few of these clinics in the year 2000, these days there are many than 1,200.
“Retail clinics emphasize convenience, with extended weekend and evening hours, no appointments, and short wait times,” the business states in the report. “More than 44 percent of retail clinic visits happen when physician offices are typically closed. Price transparency and low costs may even be particularly attractive for individuals not insured.”
This is surely portion of the profit-motive for these corporations.
Whatever the concerns one may have within the private sector participating in this kind of industry, urgent care clinics are area of the nation’s future healthcare market, especially since President Obama’s Affordable Care Act is bqbxru law in the land and will put in a burden for the system.
“Many factors could influence the future of retail clinics inside the U.S. First, the growing body of evidence casting doubt on quality-of-care concerns could lead to greater acceptance and utilize of retail clinics,” Rand added.
“Full implementation from the Affordable Care Act (ACA) can also lead to continued retail clinic growth. With additional people insured plus an increased demand for primary care underneath the ACA, access to primary care physicians could decrease. This may lead to increased need for retail clinics. Similarly, if wait times for physician appointments increase-as has been the case in Massachusetts following its health reform-this may also increase retail clinic demand.”
Inspite of the concerns that some may have about private investment possibly cutting costs to boost its bottom line, urgent care clinics must offer remedies to medical issues otherwise the consumer will go elsewhere to obtain proper medical attention.