Making health care more accessible while also building a transparent health information infrastructure in communities seems to be the one of the goals of the agreement between CVS' MinuteClinic and the American Academy of Family Physicians.
The project will utilize the Continuity of Care Record standard (ASTM CCR E2369-05)
to assure portability and interoperability of personal health records provided
to patients who visit MinuteClinic health care centers. It will field test the
CCR standard in family physicians' offices, as well as in MinuteClinic sites where
nurse practitioners and physician assistants provide care. The field test will
occur in several key markets as a prelude to a national rollout.
The move by drug store chains to provide basic health care services can provide an essential service in many communities. The idea of linking up with family physicians is a good one, as these clinics should not be a substitute for having a primary care physician, but be an adjunct to them and an additional benefit to their patients. The agreement might also speed up the movement towards, and adoption of, certified electronic health records that can be responsibly shared among practitioners and be transportable by patients. The Continuity of Care Record standard also addresses the concern that clinics of this type may contribute to fracturing the care patients receive among different types of providers.
If you are a marketer of health services or health behaviors in a community setting, pay attention to this trend and figure out the win-win-win.
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