Anybody Can Own a Walk-in Clinic, Except Doctors

Hospitals are invading the market:

Around the country, hospitals are now affiliated with more than 25 Wal-Mart clinics. The Cleveland Clinic has lent its name and backup services to a string of CVS drugstore clinics in northeastern Ohio. And the Mayo Clinic is in the game, operating one Express Care clinic at a supermarket in Rochester, Minn., and a second one across town at a shopping mall.

Consumers who use the clinics are often "exactly the customers that hospitals want – women of child-bearing age….. the hospitals want to deliver babies.

So why can't doctors own walk-in clinics? Answer: Pete Stark.

Comments (4)

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  1. Frank says:

    I don’t understand why doctors don’t get off their duffs and insist on the sames rights everyone else has.

  2. Bruce says:

    Frank, the problem is not that doctors are sitting on their duffs. The AMA is almost totally focused on what doctors get paid by Medicare and not on liberating the doctors from a dysfunctional system

  3. Juan O'Malley says:

    The Stark Laws don’t make sense.

    Are mechanics prohibited from owning car repair shops?

    Are chefs prohibited from owning restaurants?

    Are barbers prohibited from owning barbershops?

    Why are doctors prohibited from owning walk-in clinics?

  4. Devon Herrick says:

    More and more hospitals are operating retail clinics as a way to build brand awareness. Few hospitals have any idea how to compete in a retail environment. It will be interesting to see how well hospitals fare when they have to compete on price, quality and convenience in order to attract customers.