Trending Now: PediatriciansClinics Steal Market Share
Pediatricians are increasingly facing competition from retail-based clinics (RBCs) and urgent care clinics (UCCs) – and not just for minor ailments.
RBCs and UCCs have expanded to offer routine care services, such as physicals and vaccinations, rounding out their services and looking to benefit from the growth of annual well-visits for children.
RBCs have surfaced inside pharmacies (eg. CVS’s Minute Clinic) and retailers (eg. The Clinic at Walmart) across the country and continue to grow by 25%-30% monthly.[ii] Similarly, there is significant growth in UCCs.
Multi-tasking parents gravitate toward the lower cost care, location convenience and availability of non-traditional hours, including evening and weekends, with no appointments needed.
Making the wounds deeper for pediatricians, the average costs for sick visits at RBCs and UCCs is lower, at $100 and $155, respectively, for cash patients.[iii] Physicals and well-care visits are significantly less, and many insurance providers are accepted. In contrast, pediatrician visits can skyrocket upwards of $500, depending on the services provided. While insurance may cover the majority of the expense, deductibles and co-pays quickly add up.
How can pediatric practices mitigate the onslaught of RBCs and UCCs?
- Expand to include evening and weekend hours – pediatricians who have done so report a positive impact on business.[iv] While this may not be feasible, overwhelmingly RBCs and UCCs provide non-traditional hours that are more convenient for working parents.
- Foster a relationship. Continuity and quality of care are critical differentiators for pediatricians. For parents, their children are their most precious priority – lean into this emotional connection by building honest, authentic relationships with both patients and their parents. Take the time to ask about their interests, their siblings, their fears and their dreams.
- Activate a digital presence. While word-of-mouth referrals remain the top source for new patients, having a digital presence is critical. Websites provide an opportunity to educate parents about all services and specialties provided. Search is a valuable tool for driving website traffic and ensuring visibility. Social media, and Facebook namely, are necessary platforms that allow parents to advocate for their pediatricians, thus becoming brand ambassadors. Review sites, such as Yelp and HealthGrades, greatly influence parents looking to inform and validate their pediatrician selection and need to be monitored for potential liabilities.[v]
We can help. We offer products and services to build, maintain and grow a digital presence, however big or small it may be.
We’d love to talk more – Contact us or call 607.798.1325 for your free custom consultation today
i "Statistical Brief #419: Trends in Well-Child Visits: United States, 2002-2009." AHRQ.gov. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Aug. 2013
ii Westgate, Aubrey. "Retail-Based Clinics vs. Private Medical Practices Contemporary Pediatrics." Advanstar Communications, Inc., 30 Mar. 2015
iii Creswell, Julie “Race Is On to Profit From Rise of Urgent Care” The New York Times 9 Jul 2014
iv "2014 Annual Issues & Attitudes Survey." Contemporary Pediatrics. Advanstar Communications, Inc., 1 Dec. 2014
v “Many Younger Parents Weigh Online Doctor Reviews: Poll” University of Michigan 20 Feb. 2013