Published: March 16, 2009

Philadelphia, Pa. — As the number of convenient care clinics across the country steadily increases, more and more hospitals and health systems are exploring this relatively new health care trend. Due to the increased prevalence of health systems operating retail-based clinics, the Convenient Care Association has created a forum specifically for non-profit health systems. 

The goal of the group is to discuss challenges and opportunities and to share best-practices in merging the traditional health system model with retail-based care.  To date, there are more than 1,200 convenient care clinics, more than 95 percent of those are operated by members of the association and approximately 10 percent are operated by health systems. 

To date, there has been little operational guidance for managers of retail clinics linked to health systems.  “Health systems are finding that this group is a great networking opportunity,” said Dean Lin, CEO of Careworks Convenient Healthcare, Geisinger Health System’s retail clinic business.  Lin also chairs the CCA’s health system round-table. “It is valuable to share best practices and to discuss ideas that help to identify opportunities and mitigate the risks associated with this model of care, as well as integrating it with the system’s overall continuum of care,” he continued.

Retail clinic executives from several health systems met first in 2008 to discuss shared challenges and opportunities.  With the formal support of the CCA, they are now planning to meet quarterly to help address the unique issues that health systems may face in running convenient care clinics.  The group is open by invitation, please contact Dean Lin (dqlin@geisinger.edu) if you are interested in learning more and potentially participating.

“This round-table is a great opportunity for our health-system members to share thoughts on the emerging retail clinic industry,” said Tine Hansen-Turton, executive director of the Convenient Care Association. “We hope that this forum will encourage more health systems to join the association and participate in this important conversation.”

Convenient care clinics provide routine care for common illnesses, including prescriptions when appropriate.  They are open seven days a week, including extended weekday hours, and are located in retail locations. No appointment is necessary and most visits last less than 20 minutes. If a patient has a condition that is outside the scope of conditions treated at a convenient care clinic, staff will refer to them to another medical professional.

About the Convenient Care Association
The Convenient Care Association is a national non-profit organization comprised of leaders of the retail-based convenient care industry. CCA members operate more than 95 percent of the convenient care clinics in the United States, which today includes more than 1,100 clinics in 30 states. For more information or to find a clinic near you, please visit
 www.ccaclinics.org.

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