Urgent Care Partnership
Urgent care centers reduce health care costs, help patients manage their health on their own terms
Beaumont is partnering with WellStreet Urgent Care, an Atlanta-based organization, to open up to 30 urgent care centers throughout Metro Detroit by the end of 2019. A handful of the centers will open late this year and early next year. The first locations will be announced within the next few weeks.
“This comprehensive network of urgent care centers will help lower the cost of health care for consumers and employers and will be backed by the Beaumont brand, standards and quality,” Beaumont Health CEO John Fox said. “We are working closely with WellStreet, which has expertise running highly efficient and patient-focused urgent care centers. We want to serve our patients and families by providing the right level of quality care on their terms, with easy access at lower cost.”
This is part of Beaumont’s overall strategy to provide high quality, convenient and lower cost care options. The network will connect to Beaumont’s electronic medical records to enable better coordinated patient care. The system currently has 2.3 million active patient records.
“More than 40 percent of consumers visiting an urgent care do not have a primary care physician. One of our key goals will be to connect these patients with primary care physicians affiliated with the Beaumont clinically integrated network,” Fox added.
Urgent care centers near emergency rooms will also allow some patients to be seen more quickly for minor injuries and illnesses at a reduced cost compared to a much more expensive emergency room visit. This could also allow patients with more serious injuries to be seen more quickly in emergency centers.
When Beaumont patients come to an urgent care center, the medical care team will access their Beaumont electronic medical record, helping doctors and nurses provide the best coordinated care.
“We want to make it easy for people to take charge of their health by providing quick and convenient access to care,” Beaumont Chief Medical Officer David Wood, M.D., said. “When patients come to our urgent care centers, we will notify their primary care physician and share clinical information. We know it’s critically important for primary care doctors to be notified when their patients seek medical attention. Urgent care is not a substitute for primary care.”
As many consumers don’t have a primary care doctor, urgent care staff can find them a Beaumont-affiliated physician and make a follow-up appointment for the patient at the end of their visit.
WellStreet Urgent Care has experience operating similar networks in partnership with health systems. “Providers in the centers will have experience and specialized training in urgent care, so consumers can have confidence the care they receive emphasizes quality and safety,” WellStreet Urgent Care’s Chief Medical Officer Lee Resnick, M.D., said. “In addition, the modern facilities will create a warm and comfortable care environment.” Patients will be able to make appointments online and with streamlined registration and tracking processes. Typical visits are complete in less than 50 minutes.
The new venture, Beaumont Urgent Care, is in the process of selecting locations in high-traffic areas, near high-volume emergency centers, large employers and commercially dense areas.
“Beaumont, through our network of care providers, offers access to the highest-quality urgent care, primary care and specialists near home or work, so consumers can manage health care for themselves and their families, when and where they need it,” Fox added.
Weekend and evening appointments also allow recently hospitalized patients an opportunity for earlier evaluation and intervention should problems arise after hours. This easy access can help reduce hospital readmission rates and decrease health care costs for patients and employers.
Urgent care centers are most appropriate for the following medical issues:
• cough, cold or sore throat
• rashes or skin irritations
• fever or flu-like symptoms
• minor lacerations
• minor orthopedic injuries
• mild intestinal illnesses
Patients experiencing signs of a heart attack, stroke or other serious symptoms, should go directly to an emergency room. Always call 911 or go to an emergency room if you are experiencing severe or life-threatening medical symptoms.