Traffic, Dust Linked to Asthma in Kids
Air Pollution May Raise Blood Pressure
Molecule in Skin May Link Eczema and Asthma
Bitter Melon Extract May Slow, Stop Breast Cancer
Wristbands May Lessen Nausea After Radiation
Ginger Can Ease Nausea From Chemotherapy Treatments
Beware of Dog Bites
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
Rest Easy. When It Comes to Swine Flu, Your Pet Is Safe
Sea Worm Inspires Novel Bone Glue
Drinking Cuts Rheumatoid Arthritis Risk
Gene Plays Key Role in Clubfoot
Broccoli May Help Battle Breast Cancer
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Spice Compounds May Stem Tumor Growth
Timing May Matter in Organ Donation Decisions
3 Steps Might Help Stop MRSA's Spread
Omega-3 Fatty Acid May Help 'Preemie' Girls' Brains
Potassium-Rich Foods May Cut Stroke, Heart Disease Risk
Support Network May Play Role in Benefits of Drinking
Drink a Little Wine, Live a Little Longer
Wrinkle Fillers Need Better Label Warnings: FDA Panel
Gum Chewing May Cut Craving for Snacks
Contact Lenses Boost Kids' Self-Image
Periodontal Disease Impacts Whole Health
Biological Product Shows Promise Against Gum Disease
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
Whole Grains Take a Bite Out of Type 2 Diabetes Risk
Older Diabetics With Depression Face Higher Death Rate
Arthritis Hits More Than Half of Diabetics
Weight Loss Might Not Curb Knee Arthritis
Six Healthy-Sounding Foods That Really Aren't
B Vitamins Might Lower Stroke Risk
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Ozone Pollution Taking Toll on American Lives
EPA Alerts Seniors to Carbon Monoxide Dangers
Stomach Germ May Protect Against Asthma
Eye Problems, Hearing Loss May Be Linked
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Nearly 18 Million Will Have Macular Degeneration by 2050
School Phys. Ed. Injuries Up 150 Percent
Brisk Walk Can Help Leave Common Cold Behind
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Peppermint Oil, Fiber Can Fight Irritable Bowel
Traditional Nonsurgical GERD Treatments Not Impressive
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Kids More Apt to Smoke If Mom Did While Pregnant
Play Creatively as a Kid, Be a Healthier Adult
Showerheads Harbor a Bounty of Germs
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
The Internet Is Becoming One-Stop Shopping for Health Help
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Psychiatric Drugs Might Raise Cardiac Death Risk
Small Cuts in Salt Intake Spur Big Drops in Heart Trouble
Fructose Boosts Blood Pressure, Studies Find
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
Backpack Safety Should Be on Back-to-School Lists
Babies Cared For In Others Homes Might Become Heavy Toddlers
Family Medicine Cabinet Top Source Of Kid's Poisonings
Physical Activity May Prolong Survival After Colon Cancer
Low Vitamin D Levels May Boost Men's Heart Attack Risk
The Dark Side of Vegetarianism
Man's Best Friend Helps Mend Broken Hearts
Bullying Seems to Affect Kids Years Later
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
Exercise As Well As Acupuncture, May Ease Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome
Exercise Boosts Bone Density in Breast-Feeding Moms
Pre-Pregnancy Weight Linked to Babies' Heart Problems
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
Daily dose of beet juice promotes brain health in older adults
Living Alone Increases Odds of Developing Dementia
Better Sleep, Grades Seem to Go Up
Lose Weight, Sleep Apnea May Improve
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
For Women, Moderate Midlife Drinking Linked to Healthier Old Age
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Simple Carbs Pose Heart Risk for Women
Add your Article

Retail Clinics Attracting Those Without Regular Doctors

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 10 (HealthDay News) -- Typical clients of retail health clinics in the United States include patients who don't have regular health care providers and are seeking preventive care or help for easy-to-treat illnesses, says a study by the nonprofit RAND Corporation.

Retail health clinics, which are located in pharmacies and other stores, are becoming increasingly popular. Currently, there are almost 1,000 retail health clinics in the United States, and it's estimated there may be 6,000 by 2011. This is the first study to examine the types of patients who go to these clinics.

"These clinics appear to attract patients who are not routine users of the current health care system. For these patients, the convenience offered by retail clinics may be more important than the continuity provided by a personal physician," lead author Dr. Ateev Mehrotra, a professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, said in a RAND news release.

Mehrotra and colleagues analyzed more than 1.3 million visits to retail clinics between 2000 and 2007 and compared their findings to national data on visits to primary care physician offices and hospital emergency departments.

Among the findings:

* Patients ages 18 to 44 accounted for 43 percent of people visiting the clinics, compared to 23 percent of those visiting primary care physician offices.
* Only 39 percent of patients at retail clinics said they had a primary care doctor, compared with 80 percent of people surveyed nationally.
* The percentage of retail clinic visits paid for out-of-pocket decreased from 100 percent in 2000 to 16 percent in 2007.
* About 90 percent of visits to retail clinics were for preventive care (screening test or blood test) or for treatment of simple acute conditions such as: upper respiratory infections; sinusitis; bronchitis; sore throat; immunizations; inner ear infections; swimmers ear; conjunctivitis; and urinary tract infections. These conditions accounted for 18 percent of primary care visits and 12 percent of emergency department visits.

The study, which didn't examine the quality of care provided by retail clinics, was published in the September/October issue of the journal Health Affairs.

Some critics have suggested that retail health clinics may disrupt patient relationships with primary care doctors, but this study shows that's not a major issue.

"Since most of these patients do not have a primary care physician, there is no relationship to disrupt," Mehrotra noted. "However, future studies should investigate quality, the likelihood that patients are getting needed preventive and follow-up care."

More information

The Center for the Advancement of Health has more about retail medical clinics.

-- Robert Preidt

SOURCE: RAND Corporation, news release, Sept. 10, 2008

Last Updated: Sept. 10, 2008

Copyright 2008 ScoutNews, LLC. All rights reserved.

More articles at