Home Health Parents News Now Pediatric Retail Clinics' Convenience Debated Pediatric Retail Clinics' Convenience Debated By Holly Lebowitz Rossi July 25, 2013 Advertisement Save Pin FB More Tweet Email Send Text Message Print shutterstock_89518078 30432 Researchers from Washington University School of Medicine, St. Louis report that even families with well-established relationships with a pediatrician take advantage of pediatric retail clinics to take care of their children's minor health issues, even if they are staffed with non-pediatric health care personnel. Why? The researchers surveyed 1,484 parents from 19 Midwestern pediatric practices who said that they took their kids to the clinics out of convenience; 74% of the parents said they first considered going to their pediatrician, but 37% decided on the retail clinic because it had hours that conformed better with their schedules. In a corresponding editorial, Dr. Edward Schor of the Lucille Packard Foundation for Children's Health in Palo Alto, California wrote that such decisions may become more commonplace: "Retail-based clinics reflect systemic changes occurring within the health care industry to which pediatric practices must adapt." Retail clinics, which are typically run by nurse practitioners and physician assistants, are not only convenient, but cost patients about 30% to 40% less than office practices. Most of these clinics are located in retail pharmacy stores, while others are operated by hospitals or doctors' groups. The lower cost and increased convenience of the clinics are putting pediatricians on the defensive, and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) formally opposes them as an appropriate venue for care of infants and children. AAP officials question the quality of care patients receive, stemming from the fact that children may see different practitioners at each visit. Image: Mother and child at pharmacy, via Shutterstock By Holly Lebowitz Rossi Save Pin FB More Tweet Email Send Text Message Print Comments Add a Comment Be the first to comment! No comments yet. Advertisement Close this dialog window Add a comment Pediatric Retail Clinics' Convenience Debated Add your comment... Cancel Submit Success! Thanks for adding your feedback.