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    "When many cures are offered for a disease, it means the disease is not curable" -Anton Chekhov

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    Saturday, January 07, 2006

    Mass Appeal: Maybe I should open one of these. Surveys say that patients like the idea:

    An October survey by Public Opinion Strategies shows that patients like the retail clinic concept. Fifty-nine percent said they would be likely to use such a service, and nearly half said they were "very likely" to go to a retail health clinic. Why? No appointments, short waits, less expense, better hours and closeness to home, said survey respondents.

    They say their fees are less than doctors, but according to this story, the average fee is higher than my average reimbursement:

    For an average fee of $59, patients can get care from a family nurse practitioner --- without an appointment --- from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends.

    I assume most of those are paid by the patients out-of-pocket, and not insurance or Medicare reimbursed. The reimbursement I get for an average office visit here in Northeast Ohio? - $48 - 54, depending on the third party payer as of January 1.

    UPDATE: Some more thoughts here. I have to say, I'm not taken aback by the idea, I just don't think they're actually cheaper than I am - which is what they're advertised as being. Evidently people are willing to pay extra for the convenience of popping in while they're at the retailer. Still, I find it surprising that a lot of people would prefer to pay $59 out of pocket when their co-pay at the doctor's office is only $10-20. That seems like a hefty price for convenience. But then, perhaps I'm overly frugal.

    posted by Sydney on 1/07/2006 04:08:00 PM 3 comments


    I put my .02 into the discussion here:


    By Anonymous Lance Weber, at 11:51 PM  

    I responded on my blog

    And apparently I can't write well formed comments, sorry for the spam post above!

    By Anonymous Lance Weber, at 11:54 PM  

    It isn't an issue of cost somuch as an issue of hassle. The Doctor does ot answer the phone, a secretary does who often has no incentive to get the patient in that day. So the patient gets put on hold, put off until another day etc. For the extra money the patient gets direct access to the provider and knows the total visit cost up front as it is usually listed on a brochure or posted in the office. It gives the patient a measure of control. They will pay more for that opportunity and for the lack of hassles with office staff.

    By Blogger Bruce, at 9:25 AM  

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