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Insight
The Retail Clinic Market in 2009
Growth Continued Amid Caution

2000 was the decade of retail clinics. It began with one QuickMedx inside a Cub Foods grocery store in Minneapolis/St. Paul and ended with 1,183 clinics inside retail stores in 39 states (plus the District of Columbia) and 43 of the top 50 metro areas.

You can find these limited-scope medical facilities from the upper peninsula of Michigan to Dade County in South Florida, and from Los Angeles to Boston.

From 2000 to 2003 there was only one operator and only one market. But from 2004 to 2008 there was rapid, almost illogical growth. We found a chart in the New York Times Online edition from May 2006 (click here to see chart) that illustrates just how much operators thought they could grow their businesses. MinuteClinic predicted 800 to 1,100 clinics by 2009; Take Care predicted 1,400 by 2009; RediClinic predicted 1,000 by 2007.

We started last year’s review of 2008 with the words, “2008 will go down as the year that logic and reason overtook the retail clinic market, much the way it did with the technology market in 2000.”
The same logic and reason carried into 2009.   Here is a summary of retail clinic statistics:

Total Retail Clinics on 1/1/2009:  1,175
Total Retail Clinics on 1/1/2010:  1,183
Net Change: +8

Total Retail Clinic Operators on 1/1/2009: 55
Total Retail Clinic Operators on 1/1/2010: 65
Net Change: +10

Total Retailers Hosting Retail Clinics on 1/1/2009: 45
Total Retailers Hosting Retail Clinics on 1/1/2010: 40
Net Change: -5

Hospital Systems Operating Retail Clinics on 1/1/2009: 38
Hospital Systems Operating Retail Clinics on 1/1/2010: 49
Net Change: +11

A more detailed analysis is available in our ConvUrgentCareTM Report:
- All Retail Clinic Operators showing clinics at start and end of 2009
- Clinics by Operator and State
- Clinics by Retailer Host and State
- Clinics by Operator and Top 100 Metro Areas
- Clinics by Hospital System Operators
- Alphabetical List of Retail Clinics Operators, Retail Partners and Web Sites
- Top Urgent Care Operators

For more information go to the Market Data section of this web site.

More Insight
June 1, 2014
Point of Departure
What does MinuteClinic know that others don't?

In almost any industry, the leading competitors seldom do anything alone. That is certainly the case with retail pharmacies. But when it comes to retail clinics, it appears we are at the early stages of divergent paths, with CVS Caremark pulling away. When paths diverge, it leads to the obvious question: What does CVS Caremark know about the retail clinic market that its competitors don’t?

See Full Article
May 1, 2014
Joint Ventures Growing In Popularity
Hospitals Get An Assist From Private Urgent Care Operators

Don’t look now, but a partnership might be in your future. Private walk-in clinic operators and hospitals seem to be teaming up at an accelerated rate. The trend includes both retail and urgent care clinics, and if it continues, there may be very few walk-in clinic operators who don’t get into some form of partnership with local hospital systems.

See Full Article
April 1, 2014
Opportunity Amid Chaos
Health Insurance Reform Meets Walk-In Medicine

Two years ago we published an article entitled, “Is It Too Early To Think About ACOs?” It turns out it wasn’t too early. In fact, that was the time to start thinking about healthcare reform more broadly.

See Full Article
March 1, 2014
Intelligent Marketing
Walk-In Medicine Seeks New Levels of Sophistication

To a great extent, the disruption facing brick-and-mortar retail companies today represents what walk-in medicine companies will face in the coming years. Disruption in any industry is an ongoing threat. But what is clear is that sophisticated marketing tactics almost always win out when new competition emerges.

See Full Article
February 1, 2014
Strong Momentum for Walk-In Medicine
2014 Forecast Issue

If there was a consistent theme coming out of the 2014 ConvUrgentCare Strategy Symposium it was, “This is going to be a big year.”

See Full Article
January 1, 2014
2013 Year In Review
Still Lots of Eyes on the Walk-in Space

The walk-in clinic market continued to draw a substantial amount of attention in 2013.  Simply put, it is seen as a substantially more cost-effective and convenient solution for many routine medical situations.

See Full Article
December 1, 2013
The Changing Employer Landscape: Part 2
Case Studies on Engaging with Employers

Walk-in clinic operators have numerous opportunities to play a larger role in the health of the population, including partnering with employers to provide healthcare solutions for their employees.

See Full Article
November 1, 2013
The Changing Employer Landscape: Part 1
Understanding What Employers Are Facing

Any operator of walk-in clinics will tell you that engaging with employers is one of the more intimidating activities on the to-do list. But if you don’t engage with employers, you are missing an opportunity.

See Full Article
October 1, 2013
Time And Space
Connecting Patients To The Shortest Wait Time Creates Competitive Advantage

Open Google Maps on an iPhone and you can see traffic volume on virtually any metro highway system in the United States.  With that information you can choose a route with the shortest drive time.  Open the Great Clips mobile app and discover wait times at the salons closest to your current location.  Determine which one makes the most sense and check in.  Download any number of restaurant or hotel apps and you can find a table or a room wherever you happen to be at a given time.  It’s about time, space and available inventory.   Healthcare lags in the development and deployment of these technologies.  But walk-in medicine is moving rapidly to catch up.

See Full Article
September 1, 2013
The Case For Optimism
Annual Symposium Issue

To many observers of the walk-in medicine world, these are not the best of times.  There is no question that walk-in medicine faces threats on the horizon.  But the opportunities overshadow the threats, and the 2014 ConvUrgentCare Strategy Symposium will demonstrate why.

See Full Article
August 1, 2013
The Emergence of Direct Primary Care
Threat or Opportunity to Walk-In Clinics?

For years, entrepreneurial urgent care operators, as well as a number of primary care physicians, have tested the waters with membership programs and concierge medicine. But there is a new wave of enthusiasm for this business model and many who predict concierge medicine is about to take off under a new umbrella called direct primary care (DPC).

See Full Article
July 1, 2013
A Shifting Walk-in Landscape
2013 Mid-Year Review

For the urgent care and retail clinic markets, the first half of 2013 presented some anticipatory shifts in the walk-in landscape.

See Full Article
June 1, 2013
New Markets For Walk-In Services
The Number of Small Self-Insured Employers Could Explode

Employers with smaller group sizes are starting to move to self-insured arrangements.  With new health insurance products for these smaller employers, the momentum in this direction could accelerate and yield an unprecedented market for new, direct-bill healthcare services.

See Full Article
May 1, 2013
Virtual and Walk-In Converge
Telehealth Takes Aim At The Mass Market

The telemedicine industry is 20 years old.  So why are we hearing so much about telemedicine today if the industry has been around for so long?


See Full Article
April 1, 2013
The Gold Mine Within
The Evolution of Customer Service in Immediate Care Medicine

Delight, enchantment, service excellence. That’s what companies like American Express, Target and Apple call it. The big question is whether any of that customer service sophistication is showing up in the walk-in medicine industry.

See Full Article
March 1, 2013
Worksite Clinics On And Off Campus
More Complex Care Models and Payment Schemes

There is new-found energy in the worksite clinic business. Everyone wants in, from the largest health systems to the smallest insurance broker.

See Full Article
February 1, 2013
The Push For 2020 Starts Now
2013 Forecast Issue

As we look ahead to 2013, all indications are that the urgent care market will continue to gain steam, while retail clinics will see only modest growth.

See Full Article
January 1, 2013
Urgent Care Is Still Hot
2012 Year In Review
Retail clinics may still get a lot of attention in the press, but urgent care continued to be where the action was during the past 12 months.
See Full Article
December 1, 2012
Filling The Primary Care Void
New Services Are Changing The DNA Of Walk-In Medicine
TB Testing. Camp and Sports Physicals. Chronic disease management. Weight loss. Smoking cessation. And full primary care services.The reasons are up for debate, but the facts are clear: new services are showing up at local urgent care and retail clinics that weren’t there five years ago.
See Full Article
November 1, 2012
Health Insurance Buys Into Urgent Care
What's Behind Recent Acquisitions And Investments
If the last two years are any indication, large health insurance companies appear to have an appetite for acquiring or investing in urgent care networks. The rationale for these investments appears simple enough: provide more patient convenience and reduced emergency room costs. But is there more to it than that?
See Full Article

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Insight