Monday, July 24, 2006

Interesting Disruption in Health Care

Recently I began seeing an emerging trend in health care, stripped down medical clinics delivering services in grocery stores, department stores, corporate campuses, etc.

MinuteClinic is a leader of this trend. The basic idea is that:
The clinics can charge lower fees than other clinics because they use nurse practitioners who diagnose and prescribe medications for about a dozen common ailments. They refer more complicated problems elsewhere.
This week, an announcement caught my eye.
SmartCare Family Medical Centers, a rapidly growing operator of retail healthcare centers, has signed a partnership agreement with the Kroger Atlanta division of the Kroger Co. to open its SmartCare Centers inside stores located in Georgia, South Carolina and Tennessee. SmartCare Centers will initially open centers in the Atlanta metro area in the fall of 2006.
Bi Lo recently announced the beginning of A Wellspot Health and Wellness Center, offering a quick and easy alternative for family health care staffed by family nurse practitioners, who can provide treatment and diagnosis for routine conditions.

Increasing competition is a sure sign that this innovation is gaining traction in the market and becoming mainstream.

A recent article cited a Harvard Business School case study of MinuteClinic, formerly known as QuickMedx, concluded "some members of the medical community believe the clinics disrupt continuity of care for patients." Doesn't the status quo always attempt to reject an innovation that is discontinuous to them and begins to take away business? Expect to see articles that despite the fact that customers love them, these quick clinics are a threat to public health.

By the way, another interesting aspect of MinuteClinic is their management team. They have plenty of health care expertise, but one of the critical success factors will be their ability to roll out and manage a large number of individuals units. So what is the background of their CEO? Former President and CEO of Arby's Inc. That's probably a very wise choice.

2 comments:

Evan said...

Cafe Hayak has a quick post that is related to this subject. I guess the Hardard case study is the source of all the hullabaloo?

Evan said...

Cafe Hayak has a quick post that is related to this subject. I guess the Hardard case study is the source of all the hullabaloo?