Millennials Are Drifting Away from Primary Care—Just as They Need a Physician Most

There’s no gentle way to put it: Members of the Millennial generation simply are not as interested in having a traditional relationship with a primary care provider as their predecessors have been. That shouldn’t be surprising, though, given that each successive generation seems to drift farther from that model of care. Where 82% of Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) report having a primary care provider, the same can be said for only …

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New Data: More than Half of Adults Have Used Online Resources In Lieu of Primary Care

New Data: More than Half of Adults Have Used Online Resources In Lieu of Primary Care

A new study from the University of Phoenix College of Health Professionals reveals that 59% of American adults have used online resources (eg, WebMD) to explore symptoms instead of visiting a primary care physician. Just 12% have used telemedicine in place of primary care. The data reflect an online survey of 2,201 people from a range of demographic categories. Doris Savron, executive dean, interpreted the data as proof that the healthcare industry is leaning toward …

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Is There a Communication Gap Between Patients and Primary Care Physicians?

Is There a Communication Gap Between Patients and Primary Care Physicians?

The upside of patients continuing to flock to urgent care is obvious: They get the care they need when they need it, instead of having to choose between waiting for days to see their primary care provider or heading to the emergency room with a complaint that isn’t actually emergent (meaning they’re clogging up the works there, and incurring higher healthcare costs to do so). The downside of this evolution is that sometimes PCPs are …

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Can Hospitals Find Salvation by Offering Primary Care in the ED?

Can Hospitals Find Salvation by Offering Primary Care in the ED?

Hospitals and health systems have been taking a hard look at how they can maintain financial stability in recent years. As you’ve read here, many are venturing into urgent care, both on and off campus. Now, some are taking another step toward becoming everyday community health providers by offering, essentially, primary care in their emergency rooms. An article in Modern Healthcare details how one of them, Carolinas Healthcare System, realized the same old way of …

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It’s Been a Tough Spring for Direct Primary Care

It’s Been a Tough Spring for Direct Primary Care

Direct primary care—in which practices bill patients recurring fees (often monthly) that cover many services without additional charges—is faltering, with the closure of two pioneers of the model recently. Qliance Medical Management and Turntable Health have both decided to close up shop, citing difficulties in securing funding to update services (eg, by offering a more urgent care-like level of care) and invest in technologies that would facilitate virtual care. Nonetheless, direct primary care continues to …

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The Top Six Reasons Patients Seek Emergency and Urgent Care

The Top Six Reasons Patients Seek Emergency and Urgent Care

The increased wait times in emergency rooms and explosion in the popularity of urgent care have been (and continue to be) well documented. Not as much attention has been paid to why there’s so much more traffic. A study soon to be published in Academic Emergency Medicine reveals a few of the answers—and some of them support the notion that urgent care fulfills unique needs, either clinically or in terms of patient preference: Limited access …

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‘Relationship-Based Primary Care’ Experiment Closes Up Shop

‘Relationship-Based Primary Care’ Experiment Closes Up Shop

UnitedHealth Group thought it was a great idea at the time: offer no-cost primary and behavioral care, in the hope that the company would bring in enough money through claims, while also building a loyal customer base. Detractors may say it was a nonstarter, or that the notion had merit but was poorly designed; some may even point the finger at the Affordable Care Act (ACA, or Obamacare). Either way, the company is shutting down …

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Urgent Care–Primary Care Partnership Lauded

Urgent Care–Primary Care Partnership Lauded

A pair of medical practices—one urgent care and one primary care—received a municipal business award for a cooperative venture to make care as accessible as possible for their surrounding communities. Immediate Care Walk-In and CentraState Healthcare System forged an affiliation in 2015 to open a combination primary/urgent care facility in East Windsor, NJ. For their efforts, they received the town’s 2016 Business Award for Community Enhancement, based on polling of residents who were asked to …

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Jump in Flu Cases Increases Telemedicine Use

Jump in Flu Cases Increases Telemedicine Use

Carena, a virtual urgent care center in Seattle, has gained a healthy following among brick-and-mortar urgent care clinics around the country by “seeing” patients with fairly typical complaints like rashes and symptoms of bladder infections. The company reports that their lines are really jumping now that flu season is in full force. They, and other e-medicine providers, can’t offer flu shots, of course, but they can help patients who don’t have the flu avoid exposure …

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Strong Referral Relationships Benefit Urgent Care and Partners

Strong Referral Relationships Benefit Urgent Care and Partners

Helping patients manage chronic conditions typically falls to primary care providers or specialists. At the same time, those people are just as likely as other patients to walk into your urgent care center—if not more so. CityMD and Mount Sinai Health System in New York City have teamed up to formalize a referral system that is designed to benefit all parties concerned. Mount Sinai will encourage patients to visit CityMD clinics when they have a …

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