National researchers have now officially blessed both the quality and the pricing of fast-growing retail clinics. They say the care is as good as, and sometimes better than, emergency rooms and regular doctors' offices, and the fees are dramatically lower.
While the limited-care retail centers may not solve the entire health care mess on their own, Dr. Ateev Mehrotra said they are "intriguing."
Burgeoning retail health outlets are "providing care at a lower cost, at a higher quality, where it's more convenient," Mehrotra said. He wrote a RAND Corp. study in August praising costs and outcomes at retail clinics treating ear infections, sore throats and urinary tract infections.