MinuteClinic, a division of the leading pharmacy healthcare provider in the United States, CVS Caremark Corporation (CVS - Analyst Report) opened its first walk-in medical clinic in Hawaii on Sep 26. The clinic is located at the Longs Drug store on South King St in Honolulu, near the University of Hawaii, Man.
The inauguration of the new store in Hawaii, is a part of the company’s expansion drive intended to extend specialized healthcare services throughout the nation. MinuteClinic plans to open 150 clinics across the nation in 2013.
The new store is the first of seven MinuteClinic locations set to open inside select Longs Drug stores on Oahu within the next two weeks. The remaining clinics will cater to the patient population in Aiea, Hawaii Kai, Kailua, Kaneohe, Kapolei, and Waialae.
CVS Caremark is the exclusive provider of pharmacy benefit management (PBM) services for Hawaii Medical Service Association (HMSA), Hawaii's Blue Cross Blue Shield Association licensee. Following the collaboration between CVS Caremark and HMSA in Jan 2013, HMSA has been constantly encouraging MinuteClinic to start their services in Hawaii.
The clinic will be functional on all seven days of the week, including weekday evenings. Prior appointments will not be necessary. Certain services have also been introduced keeping in mind the convenience of patients. As footfalls are generally high in evenings and during weekends or holidays, patients often visit MinuteClinic without an appointment with their primary care provider. They are then provided with a list of physicians in the area, who are ready to accept new patients.
The new clinic is designed to deliver a host of medical services like other MinuteClinic locations in the U.S. It employs well-trained nurse practitioners proficient to diagnose, treat, and even write prescriptions for common family illnesses such as strep throat and ear, eye, sinus, bladder, and bronchial infections. Additionally they are also specialized in treating minor wounds, abrasions and joint sprains and administering common vaccinations such as influenza, tetanus, pneumonia and Hepatitis A & B.
Moreover, walk-in camp, sports, college and Department of Transportation (DOT) physicals will be available on a regular basis. Like other MinuteClinic stores, this one too plans to offer multiple wellness services such as screenings and monitoring for diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. The noble intention behind such activities is to help people identify current lifestyle changes and readily adopt health improvement ideas and techniques.
The USP of MinuteClinic that differentiates it from others, is the use of a software program by their expert practitioners, that generates an educational material, an invoice and a prescription (when clinically appropriate) at the end of the patient's visit. It also delivers a vital diagnostic record that can be sent via electronic health record, fax or mail to a primary care provider with the patient’s permission, as and when needed.
Cash and credit payment facility will be available at the clinic. Likewise, majority of the health insurance benefits will be accepted including the Hawaii Medical Service Association (HMSA) plans. Furthermore, treatment prices are posted at each clinic location and are also made available online for customer convenience. The costs for most treatments start at $79.
The primary mission of MinuteClinic healthcare providers is to meet the growing healthcare needs of people, with an added focus on convenience and affordability. MinuteClinic seeks to provide its patients with a medical home which can contribute to their holistic development. Ever since its launch as the first retail medical clinic in the United States in 2000, MinuteClinic has been expanding its retail network to deliver quality medical healthcare services to people, with greater ease and comfort.
Currently, CVS carries a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). Other medical stocks that are worth a look include Rite Aid Corporation (RAD - Analyst Report),carrying a Zack Rank #1 (Strong Buy), and GNC Holdings Inc. (GNC - Analyst Report) and Herbalife Ltd. (HLF - Snapshot Report), each carrying a Zacks Rank # 2 (Buy).