WOONSOCKET, R.I. — MinuteClinic has formed a clinical partnership with Catholic Healthcare West, the nation’s eighth-largest hospital system, to provide enhanced health care services in the Phoenix metropolitan area.
The CVS Caremark retail health clinic subsidiary said Thursday that under the agreement, family physicians on the staff of a Catholic Healthcare West (CHW) hospital will serve as medical directors for MinuteClinics in Phoenix.
MinuteClinic has 10 walk-in clinics at CVS pharmacies in the Phoenix area. The clinics are staffed by nurse practitioners who provide treatment for common illnesses and administer wellness and prevention services and health condition monitoring.
Also under the alliance, MinuteClinic and CHW will collaborate on patient education and disease management initiatives and will inform patients of the services that each provider offers. CHW, too, will accept patients who need a level of care that’s not provided at MinuteClinic, according to CVS Caremark. Signs at MinuteClinics will inform patients that each site is a clinical collaborator with CHW.
And later this year, MinuteClinic and CHW plan to integrate their electronic medical record systems to streamline communication around all aspects of an individual’s care. With patient permission, each CHW-affiliated MinuteClinic will share medical history and visit summaries with other CHW locations in Phoenix. In the meantime, CVS Caremark said, MinuteClinic will continue its standard practice of sending visit summaries via fax or mail, typically within 24 hours.
"We share a common goal with Catholic Healthcare West to strengthen the Phoenix community by expanding access to high quality, affordable health care services in locations close to where people live and work," Andrew Sussman, president of MinuteClinic and senior vice president and associate chief medical officer at CVS Caremark, said in a statement. "Through this agreement, Catholic Healthcare West will serve as a valuable resource to MinuteClinic nurse practitioners in Phoenix.
"We also look forward to collaborating with Catholic Healthcare West on information connectivity and a broad range of programs, including our new monitoring services and lab testing for diabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol and asthma patients," Sussman added.
CHW, based in San Francisco, is a system of 40 hospitals and medical centers in Arizona, California and Nevada.
"This strategic collaboration will create a seamless linkage to CHW’s broader continuum of care," commented Scott Nordlund, CHW’s vice president of new venture and partnership development. "CHW will continue to seek relationships with ‘best-in-class organizations’ that will provide the community with greater access to convenient, high quality health care services."