NewsKROGER, BETTER HEALTH Launch Primary Care Options for Older People

KROGER, BETTER HEALTH Launch Primary Care Options for Older People

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A new partnership aims to give seniors another primary care option: supermarkets.

Kroger Health, the health care arm of the Cincinnati-based retailer with more than 2,700 grocery stores in 35 states and the District of Columbia, is joining forces with Better Health Group to focus its 225 Little Clinic in-store walk-in clinics Provides care services to Medicare seniors in the primary population, including Medicare Advantage plans.

Kroger joins a growing list of disruptors from other industries entering the health care market with consumer-focused primary and specialty care services. Companies like Amazon, Walmart, Publix, Google, and national drugstore chains like Walgreens, CVS Health, and Rite Aid are looking to replicate the success of the health care retail experience by providing services to those who face barriers to accessing care or are more willing to accept it. People who serve provide services. store instead of a hospital or doctor’s office.

Some in the health care industry are calling this a battle for primary care, as health systems and medical practices look to retain patients and attract new ones in the face of competition from outside organizations. According to a study released by Bain & Company in 2030, these disruptors could capture 30% of the primary care market within six years.

“As the industry continues to shift toward value-based reimbursement, there is an increase in non-traditional players and models in primary care,” Bain & Company partner Erin Ney, MD, said in a press release accompanying the report. “Looking ahead , rising costs, physician shortages, consumerism and digital disruption will continue to put pressure on traditional healthcare models, paving the way for the further development of models that promote more efficient care, improved outcomes and lower overall costs.”

Health system executives are urged to improve the patient experience, including adopting virtual care and digital health tools, and adopt retail strategies focused on convenience and reliability.

As organizations like Kroger, Amazon and Walmart offer alternatives to doctor’s offices or hospitals, experts say health systems need to identify and focus on services they can offer that others can’t, which in many cases is associated with respected hospital or hospital contacts. Medical group. At the same time, critics say cost, complexity and access challenges are driving consumers away from health care and opening the door to disruptors.

Founded in 2016 at Physician Partners, Better Health Group operates more than 160 senior-focused VIPcare clinics and works with more than 1,200 providers. Officials with Kroger Health and Better Health said the partnership will provide value-based care to a population in urgent need of centralized services and better access to care.

The partnership will begin in select Kroger supermarkets in the Atlanta area before expanding to other stores in 2024.

Eric Wicklund is deputy content manager and senior editor for innovation, technology, telehealth, supply chain and pharmaceuticals at HealthLeaders.

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