/publications/issue/2011/August2011/Researching-Retail-Clinics-in-Real-Time

Researching Retail Clinics in Real Time

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A new service makes it easier for patients to shop around online for routine health care. In keeping with its mission to provide convenient, affordable care, Walgreens’ Take Care Clinic now offers online access to real-time data on wait times, clinical quality scores, and estimated costs at its walk-in clinics.

By visiting www.takecarehealth.com, patients can quickly evaluate how much a service will cost under their insurance plan, find out what other patients are saying about clinics in their area, and look up quality scores based on national guidelines for health care delivery. Patients can also see how long they’ll have to wait in line and whether vaccines they need are in stock.

The information is useful to consumers, but also meets a goal of many health plans by empowering patients to “take a more proactive and informed role in choosing what the best and most cost-effective setting is for them,” said Heather Helle, Walgreens divisional vice president for Take Care Health’s consumer solutions group.