Low Cost Health Clinic Opens In Big Box StoreBy Jeffrey Hess | Published 05 Jul 2011 03:37pm |
There are roughly 500-thousand Mississippians living without health insurance, making access to doctors and nurses difficult and expensive. MPB's Jeffrey Hess reports on efforts by hospitals and a big-box super store to provide more affordable health treatments.
At a Wal-Mart in Flowood customers shop for everything from food to clothing to tires and now....health care.
A low cost heath care clinic just opened inside the store staffed by nurse practitioners and a doctor from Baptist Hospital in Jackson.
Clinic Nurse Leslie Robinson says they treat most common conditions and non-emergency problems for around 60-dollars.
"It’s to provide a quick, convenient way to be seen for your health conditions without running to the ER or if you can't get in to see your local physician," Robinson said.
The clinic has two small exam rooms, a mini-laboratory for tests and nurses have the ability to write prescriptions, if they decide a patient needs medicine.
The clinics are intended to be a quick and affordable place for patients to access health care without going to a doctor or emergency room....which is important for a state with half-a-million people without health insurance.
Amir Jadbabaei is uninsured and says he would use the walmart clinic if he needs treatment.
"Without insurance, sometimes it is tough to not think about it all the time and you already have the outlook of going to a place knowing you are going to have to spend a lot more money than usual. Maybe it would be a bit more in my price range to go to somewhere in Wal-Mart. It is way more affordable than $100 visit without insurance at a regular clinic," Jadbabaei said.
Linda Loftin is also uninsured and says convenience makes her inclined to try the clinic.
"Because you get everything right here together. Health care, groceries, eye care...it’s great," Loftin said.
The clinic only treats minor conditions....for chronic or complex conditions that require repeated care, the nurses can refer patients to more traditional health care outlets for treatment.
Wal-Mart leases the space inside the store to area hospitals to run the clinic...this is the fifth clinic to open up in Mississippi.
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