The headline in quotes above actually appeared in Colorado’s Sky-Hi News this week, reflecting a self-assessed trend at Denver Health’s Winter Park Medical Center. The facility opened its own urgent care location almost a year ago, with the notion that the move might help alleviate crowding in its emergency room. Being at the base of a ski resort, however, they’ve seen more volume than a standard business model might predict; more predictably, they’ve found that the bills patients receive are lower than they would be in the ED. They see the typical array of sore throats, painful ears, and gastrointestinal complaints, but also more patients experiencing problems with the altitude and skiing-related injuries than the typical urgent care center closer to sea level. This is all good news, of course, but looking at the Sky-Hi News article from a broader perspective provides the opportunity to learn a valuable lesson. People who’ve never been in the area—and therefore don’t know Winter Park Medical Center from Howard Johnson’s—saw the headlines and will probably be more inclined to visit there while visiting the area. The same goes for local businesses who might be ripe for a new occupational medicine contract. Consider what story your data might tell, and share it with the local media.

 

Talk About Good News (Literally): ‘Denver Health’s Urgent Care Helps Patients Lower Bills’
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