Can Walk-in Clinics Provide Chronic Care?

I have always believed that the only thing standing between chronic patients and a dynamic, competitive market that provides low-cost, state-of-the-art chronic care is the third-party payer system.

By definition, walk-in clinics are outside the system — although many third-party payers pay their fees. Because they entered the market for cash-paying patients who are concerned about the time cost of care as well as the money cost, they are free to do what conventional practitioners cannot do — repackage and reprice their services in response to changing market conditions.

Can these clinics cater to the needs of chronic patients? Apparently some are going to try. Some doctors are upset, but they should focus on a different source of their problems — the AMA, which bought into and profits from the CPT code system that retail clinics are free to ignore.

Comments (2)

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  1. Joe S. says:

    Interesting post.

  2. Ken says:

    This is consistent with the NCPA ideas on chronic care. You are probably right that walk-in clinics can be the innovators since they are largely outside the third-party-payer system.