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Retail Clinic Mention Without Snark

Published January 2, 2008 3:25 PM by Jill Rollet

The mainstream media has finally mentioned retail health clinics in a positive light without including a snarky, negative comment from a physician.

The December 2007 issue of Smart Money features "10 Things Your Primary-Care Physician Won't Tell You." Number five is "Sore throat? You might be better off going to the mall."

Walk-in clinics are springing up across the country. They're run by nurse practitioners, who diagnose simple maladies, like strep throat or flu, and provide prescriptions, medical advice or referrals if the problem is beyond their scope. These clinics have caught on in part because they're fast and don't require an appointment, says Steven Cooley, a physician and CEO of SmartCare Family Medical Centers in Denver. They're also cheap — $40 to $60 a visit, versus $150 for a doctor or $300 for an ER visit — and many take insurance.

Whatever you think about emphasizing simple ailments or low cost, the only comment from a physician is a compliment.

posted by Jill Rollet

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