July 01, 2014
HCA Midwest Health System, Kansas City’s leading healthcare provider, and Walgreens, the nation’s largest drugstore chain, announce a collaboration that will provide coordinated and expanded healthcare services for area residents, while enhancing access to high-quality, convenient and affordable care for patients.
The collaboration will include access to coordinated care through Kansas City metro area Healthcare Clinics at select Walgreens. Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens are staffed by board-certified, licensed nurse practitioners, who can provide care for patients 18 months and older. Working with Walgreens, HCA Midwest Health System patients have added convenient, walk-in care options including care for minor injuries or illnesses, health testing and screening and support when their physicians’ offices may be closed, including after-hours and weekends, or when an Emergency Room (ER) visit is not required.
While Walgreens encourages all patients to have a designated primary care physician (PCP) and medical home for ongoing needs, Healthcare Clinics at select Walgreens nurse practitioners can write prescriptions and administer immunizations. Direct communication between Healthcare Clinic nurse practitioners and HCA Midwest physicians can enable ongoing coordinated patient care.
“We are pleased to partner with Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens, knowing that this collaboration extends quality care directly into our communities to provide greater access options for patients”, says M.L. Lagarde III, President, HCA Midwest Health System. “We have all experienced the inconvenience of getting sick during the night or on weekends when the doctor’s office is closed. Through our relationship with Walgreens, we are able to provide HCA Midwest Health System patients a more comprehensive continuum of care, ensuring that patients are provided the right level of care, close to where they live, work and play
According to Darryl Nelson, MD, Chief Medical Officer, HCA Midwest Health System, another important benefit is that Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens will complement HCA Midwest Health System’s robust physician network, urgent care and other facilities, acting as a treatment point for non-emergency situations.
“There truly is no substitute for an individual’s physician,” Nelson says. “What happens is that many patients view the emergency room as the only viable option for medical care in the evening, on the weekend or other times when the doctor's office may be closed, often resulting in higher costs for patients. ER’s are frequently crowded with ‘non-emergency’ patients, who could be treated less expensively elsewhere. Healthcare Clinic nurse practitioners are skilled at quickly evaluating conditions, then treat or refer the patient to the appropriate next step which can include physician follow-up, urgent care or the ER. . Additionally, and with patient consent, Walgreens will be able to share information back to their HCA Midwest Health System physician to provide a seamless and efficient plan of care, benefitting all parties.
“With the healthcare system today facing myriad of challenges, Healthcare Clinic at select Walgreens can play an important role in enhancing patient access to quality, convenient and affordable care,” says Alan E. London, Walgreens vice president of strategic clinical partners. “Working with a highly integrated and respected health system such HCA Midwest Health System offers an ideal opportunity to further coordinate patient care in the Greater Kansas City area. We look forward to working together to help patients in these communities get, stay and live well.”
HCA Midwest Health System, with seven hospitals, multiple urgent care and outpatient facilities, more than 450 providers and 145 physician office locations, is known for delivering easily-accessible quality care within the Greater Kansas City region. For more information, visit www.hcamidwest.com/walgreens.