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flashl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 08:31 AM
Original message
Wal-Mart partners with hospitals to rapidly expand in-store clinics
Source: American Medical News

Analysts say the giant retailer wants the good will a trusted hospital name can provide. Hospitals, meanwhile, say they don't intend to compete with physicians.

As big-name national retailers and pharmacy chains continue to open in-store clinics, a familiar face soon may enter the fray as well -- your local hospital.

Wal-Mart recently announced plans to partner with community hospitals across the country to open up 400 new retail clinics inside its stores by 2010, in addition to the 55 it already houses. Thirteen of those are owned and operated by hospital systems.

...

Wal-Mart hopes that by creating a company-wide brand, the clinics will become more standardized. The move is part of Wal-Mart's corporate strategy to improve its image and change its reputation from one of being bad for communities and a burden on the health care system to one of being a good corporate citizen and a partner in health care access and affordability, experts say.

American Medical News


Read more: http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2008/02/25/bil10225.ht...



If only the retail clinics model works as advertised this would help relieve healthcare shortfalls.
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izquierdista Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 08:45 AM
Response to Original message
1. What could go wrong?
With the level of service and quality we have come to expect from Wal-Mart?
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Kolesar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 08:58 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Medications with lead in them...eom
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phillysuse Donating Member (683 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 08:54 AM
Response to Original message
2. Will the doctors be from China
as well as the drugs?
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flashl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 09:09 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. Maybe not from China specifically but international, yes ...
With Congress' help passing legislation to increase visas and seminars training HR personnel how to avoid hiring 'American' the number of international primary care doctors is going up.

And, don't you know, the 'cost savings' thingy thats so good for us requires production elsewhere.
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Thor_MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 10:23 AM
Response to Reply #4
9. International Brotherhood of Medical Associates, Local H1-B
To steal a line I read eariler this morning...
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 06:55 PM
Response to Reply #4
36. my doctor is an "international"
He's the best doctor I've ever had. Lots of people I know prefer their "foreign" doctor to American ones, in part because, guess what, these are the best doctors from their respective countries. If you are concerned, be concerned for the nations that these men and women hail from, which are losing their best and brightest. But don't act the part of the Know-Nothing. Let the Republicans be the party afraid of immigrants, all to themselves.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 09:48 AM
Response to Original message
5. Probably will rely on nurse practitioners and physician assistants.
The rebranded "Clinic at Wal-Mart" also will sport the name of the partnering health system providing the nurse practitioners and physician assistants dispensing care, as well as the doctors overseeing them. But Wal-Mart would standardize the clinics so they have a similar look and feel, such as having each clinic post a price list and keep similar hours.


My question is are other countries ready to produce nurse practitioners and physician assistants by the hundreds of thousands?
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Phred42 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 10:11 AM
Response to Original message
6. Wal-MArt needs to be stopped
They will become the only place in some small towns to do ANY commerce.

In Fascism - The merger of State and Corporate Interests they become

The Company Store.
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ohio2007 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 10:20 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. They want a slice of that national insurance pie
only the poor,unemployed and uninsured will go to "the company doctor". They may be better off with no medical insuance at all
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ldf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:00 PM
Response to Reply #7
17. exactly
it's a great corporate strategy.

many shoppers at walmart don't have insurance.

not only will it allow walmart a big slice of the $$ that will come from universal healthcare coverage (they see the writing on the wall), it wall also create a huge increase in loyalty shopping for other lowpriced products, from those very same shoppers who would use a walmart clinic.

however, if they continue on their previous corporate model, walmart WILL come up with a way to cut expense corners.

that IS the name of their game.
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Thor_MN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 10:22 AM
Response to Original message
8. "Every restaurant is Taco Bell"
DC's idea of competition has turned to the concept of which Starbucks on the same block is going to get your business. I almost can't wait for the oil to run out so that the big box concept dies a miserable death in favor of neighborhood stores.
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dysfunctional press Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:40 AM
Response to Reply #8
16. you're going to have to wait a long time...
none of the people alive today will live to see the oil run out.

we may see astronomical prices- and at some point most vehicles will have a different source of power- including the trucks that stock the big box stores...

but we won't see the oil run out.
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okoboji Donating Member (510 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 10:38 AM
Response to Original message
10. Wal-Mart is NOT the only company doing this
in my town - a grocery store by the name of HY-Vee has these medical clinics in them, not Wal-Mart.

Also, Hy-Vee is now offering over 400 medications for $4, just like Wal-Mart.


http://www.hy-vee.com

http://www.curaquick.com/news2.htm
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CatholicEdHead Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #10
34. Well HyVee only covers Iowa and parts of neighboring border areas
So, another example of how Iowa goes, so goes the country. ;)
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Mojorabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:00 AM
Response to Original message
11. The hopistals here
are buying up physician private practices. Most docs coming out of school with so much debt are going to work for companies, ie HMOs and for hospitals. The days of private practice with personal care are numbered. Now walmart and other chains want to get in on it.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:34 AM
Response to Reply #11
15. Well over half of physicians do not own their practice. What about dentists? n/t
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Mojorabbit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-25-08 01:55 AM
Response to Reply #15
42. I don't know
and it would be interesting to find out. My husband owns his own medical practice but is being courted by a hospital. He has been in practice for over 25 years. The costs of running a small business are really high. It seems to me that it is not ever a good thing to have a large business like a hospital telling a physican how to run a practice and I know a lot of docs who did sell and are trying to earn enought to buy it back while others are ok with the concept. I don't think it bodes well for the future. It takes away a lot of flexibility.
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jody Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-25-08 04:58 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. I agree, "I don't think it bodes well for the future." n/t
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pattmarty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:18 AM
Response to Original message
12. Well, I guess that permanently fixes the "health care" problem.........
......... next on to the churches.
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tanyev Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:04 PM
Response to Reply #12
18. I guess pretty soon we'll be able to get that at Wal-Mart, too.
Wal-Mart...why go anywhere else?
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area51 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:18 AM
Response to Original message
13. "...a burden on the health care system..."
If Mal-Wart was really interested in changing their image and fixing the healthcare crisis in this country (and of course, they're not interested), they'd use their vast wealth to buy armies of lobbyists to lobby Congress that we need to transition to single-payer. What MW and other nazi businesses are too stupid and short-sighted to see, is that single-payer would benefit them and lower their costs.


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Javaman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 11:25 AM
Response to Original message
14. If there was any glimmer of hope for national healthcare, this just took it
around back and put a bullet through it's head.
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ReformedChris Donating Member (252 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:26 PM
Response to Reply #14
21. If anything shows people we need Single Payer National Healthcare, it is developments like this
I think people look at these clinics as a depressing sign of the times. I have zero health insurance and had to go to one in Wally World. The people I was waiting in line with commented on how bad our healthcare is to come to this. I say that each one of these that are built brings more people in the National Healthcare Camp. Repukes will of course comment on its "greatness" :puke:
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pattmarty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #14
22. Agree. As in the healthcare industry, as these groups become......
.... more entrenched the harder it will be to get any MEANINGFUL single payer (the government) program started.
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bitchkitty Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:04 PM
Response to Original message
19. There used to be a body shop on Ponce de Leon Avenue in Atlanta
that sold Chinese food. This feels equally strange...
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Hugabear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:21 PM
Response to Original message
20. You're witnessing the Republican answer to universal health care
Allow giant mega-corporations like Walmart to set up cheap clinics for low-income people.

I'm sure they'll provide the best medication that China has to offer.
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okoboji Donating Member (510 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 01:48 PM
Response to Reply #20
27. Not Cheap clinics
try $45 per visit
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BadgerKid Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:56 PM
Response to Original message
23. Watch the access to medical records
There was a story this week (can't find it online) about how the state (Illinois) wants to staff at least one doctor per two "grocery pharmas" and to have patients' medical records on site.

Something about "medical records" and "WalMart" in the same thought makes me feel violated.
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Donnachaidh Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 07:15 PM
Response to Reply #23
37. Walmart was forking over patients records a full MONTH before required
Back when they instituted the law about OTC allergy drugs - the pseudo-ephedrine stuff?

Walmart was actually sending information directly to DHS a full month before it was required. I know because I had gone in to buy just that, and the pharmacist said I could not buy it without showing him my driver's license! I asked why, and he said the main offices was requiring this.

F*ck Walmart. Keep them OUT of the medical business. period.
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 12:58 PM
Response to Original message
24. it's fine by me
I only recently got health insurance coverage again. When I needed a tetanus shot, I could either go to my doctor (earliest appointment in a week) and pay $70 out of pocket, plus the cost of the vaccine. Or I could go to the Minute Clinic that day and pay less than half what the doctor visit would cost me. Nurse practioners are perfectly capable of giving a standard vaccine. Lots of doctors already shuffle mundane visits to NPs--though they don't charge any less for it--so why the worry about whether these clinics will do a decent job? They'll be fine. The people who will go to them exclusively would otherwise not get medical care until they needed to be seen in the ER.
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Heywood J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 01:33 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. Except until it turns out that
the vaccine or the needle were sourced from the lowest bidder - who happened to be the Guangzhou Chemical Company in China. Chinese chemical companies are not licensed for pharmaceutical production, but they make them anyway - and that classification difference means there's no drug agency oversight.

Even if it's not right now, who's to say that when things settle out and people become complacent, that they won't switch things out quietly when no one's looking to make that extra dollar. This happens all the time on other products, a supplier change under the same brand name makes the new product that's nowhere near as good. GE does that, actually. GE products sold in Wal-Mart are produced separately and handled separately than GE products sold elsewhere. At least, that was the case a few years ago.

Personally, I'd rather not trust the company known for reselling tainted, remaindered Chinese merchandise with my health care. Especially with recent high-profile security breaches, I'd rather not trust any retail chain with my medical records of any kind. Who knows what kind of marketing database will be cross-referenced with that.
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flakban Donating Member (122 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 01:54 PM
Response to Reply #25
28. those are valid concerns
I couldn't agree more.
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pop goes the weasel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 06:50 PM
Response to Reply #25
35. this is suddenly a concern?
What makes you think that the vaccine you get at the doctor's or from a public health clinic is any better? Do you read the label? Do you know where it was made, and under what conditions?
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Heywood J Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 09:30 PM
Response to Reply #35
41. Yes and no.
"What makes you think that the vaccine you get at the doctor's or from a public health clinic is any better?"
At least when I get it from a public health clinic, there's a better than zero chance that it was made somewhere other than China. Well over ninety percent of what Wal-Mart sells is made in China, there's no reason to believe the vaccines or drugs will be any different, especially after the introductory period. The odds are better elsewhere - at worst, it would be just as bad, and you would not be contributing to a company infamous for social and labor ills.

"Do you read the label?"
Sometimes, actually. I read it last year for the flu (only vaccine I've received in recent years), it was the same vaccine this year.

"Do you know where it was made, and under what conditions?"
Not off the top of my head, my memory for things like that isn't great. Given a quick phone call, though, I could find out. I sincerely doubt that Wal-Mart would reveal such information in person, much less over the phone. That would be a trade secret.




My point here is that the company has a track record for skimping on quality and selling bottom-dollar merchandise. There is no reason at all to expect this would be any different should it expand into other industries - the company's philosophy doesn't change just because it sells an additional product. It's also a company fined repeatedly for violating the law, be it labor or safety. Deception has been a part of the business model for a long time.

I mean, this is a company where I would only barely trust that the person administering the drug or vaccine was an RN or doctor and not someone dressed up to play the part.
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Neshanic Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 01:44 PM
Response to Original message
26. This needs to be stopped on a national level, before it goes any further.
This is so scary it is mind boggling.
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fenriswolf Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 03:29 PM
Response to Original message
29. hope they don't accidently lock in patients
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AngryAmish Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 03:35 PM
Response to Original message
30. This is a good thing
Not perfect or ideal but good.

I think nurse practicioners should be used more for routine stuff. They are competant to refer to MDs for stuff they can't do.

The US does not produce enough MDs because the AMA keeps the supply low, driving up costs.
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xxqqqzme Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 03:41 PM
Response to Original message
31. Do you pay for the mall wart insurance policy
you picked up on aisle 7 when you check out or at the clinic?
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MiaCulpa Donating Member (741 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 05:06 PM
Response to Original message
32. 'Retail clinics'
Discount healthcare can only come at a price, and I doubt it will be at the expense of the provider. We need healthcare solutions, yes, we don't need Walmart healthcare.
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arikara Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 05:45 PM
Response to Original message
33. McMedicine...
the doctor or practitioner will be allowed up to 5 minutes per patient, just long enough to write out a prescription for made in China medications.

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and-justice-for-all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 07:33 PM
Response to Reply #33
39. Ha! McMeds!! Love it
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and-justice-for-all Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 07:32 PM
Response to Original message
38. Oh fuck me! nt
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peacetheonlyway Donating Member (948 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Feb-24-08 09:11 PM
Response to Original message
40. They Will Cram Untested, Low Price Pharmaceuticals
down our throats and make huge margin further killing the elderly
with cheap low quality goods that are made to destroy us rather than help us.

*** I live in the same neighborhood as the CEO of costco and I will have MUCH TO SAY when I meet with him in a month or so.

THe only reason Walmart wins is the costco and the other dem companies of the world don't get there first.

we need to do this on our own terms.

but in general quality clinics makes sense, making healthcare more accessible and affordable is the goal, but Walmart will make it more dangerous , harder to access and more expensive.

*** you can thank andy groves of Intel for this.. he gave the idea of "disruptive markets" to the CEO of walmart. fuck you very much andy!
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Vinca Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Feb-25-08 05:08 PM
Response to Original message
44. You don't go bankrupt over poison ivy or a case of the flu.
Is Walmart also planning a surgical suite, x-ray machines and an ICU? Give me a break.
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