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Massachusetts health care — wonky, with a healthy dose of reality

Retail Clinic Boom Is Trailing Off...

Retail Clinic Boom Is Trailing Off...

May 7, 2008

From today's Kaiser Health Policy Report via the Wall Street Journal:

The "boom" of walk-in health clinics at pharmacies, supermarkets and retailers "is showing signs of slowing." As of May 1, there were 963 retail clinics in the U.S., compared with 125 three years ago. However, some retail clinic operators recently have closed 69 clinics in 15 states, and others, including CVS Caremark, have announced their intentions to scale back clinic expansion plans.

Tom Charland, owner of Merchant Medicine and a former vice president for strategy at CVS' MinuteClinic, said, "We have seen fallout in this industry, on a smaller scale, that is not unlike the dot-com bubble," adding, "The big mistake was for people to think they could reach break-even in six months. People are learning this is an 18-to-24-month process to get to break-even."