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MinuteClinic, Hackensack University Health Network sign clinical affiliation

BY Antoinette Alexander

WOONSOCKET, R.I., and HACKENSACK, N.J. — Retail-based clinic operator MinuteClinic, which is owned by CVS Caremark, is partnering with Hackensack University Health Network, the largest provider of inpatient and outpatient health services in New Jersey, in a clinical affiliation that expands access to healthcare services in northeast New Jersey.

Under the agreement, HackensackUMC physicians will serve as medical directors for six MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in Bergen, Passaic and Hudson counties and parts of Essex County. MinuteClinic and HackensackUMC also will collaborate on patient education and disease management initiatives, and refer patients to one another when clinically appropriate. HackensackUMC will accept patients requiring a level of care not provided by MinuteClinic; while MinuteClinic will offer patients walk-in services for common family illnesses and wellness and prevention services, such as health condition monitoring.

Signage at MinuteClinic locations will inform patients that each site has a clinical affiliation with HackensackUMC.

"MinuteClinic’s HackensackUMC affiliation will enable both organizations to capitalize on our strengths and share valuable knowledge as we continue improving our patient-centered approach to high quality healthcare services," said Andrew Sussman, president of MinuteClinic and SVP/associate chief medical officer for CVS Caremark. "We look forward to having HackensackUMC physicians collaborate with our nurse practitioners to provide quality oversight, teaching and back-up so we can provide the best care at the lowest overall cost."

HackensackUMC has more than 1,600 physicians providing a range of healthcare services to patients in northeast New Jersey.

"We are pleased to partner with MinuteClinic on this important clinical affiliation," added Robert Garrett, president and CEO of HackensackUMC. "Combining our award-winning clinical expertise with the trusted reputation of MinuteClinic will undoubtedly serve as an asset to members of our local community. This affiliation is another demonstration of our commitment to providing patient-centered, efficient care, and we look forward to a longstanding relationship with MinuteClinic."

In addition to collaborating on patient care and education programs, MinuteClinic and HackensackUMC will work toward fully integrating electronic medical record systems to streamline communication around all aspects of patients’ care. With patient permission, MinuteClinic will electronically share medical histories and visit summaries with HackensackUMC locations in northeast New Jersey. In the meantime, MinuteClinic will continue its standard practice of sending patient visit summaries to primary care providers via fax or mail, typically within 24 hours of the visit.


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Tablets driving online revenue for retailers, survey finds

BY Allison Cerra

WASHINGTON — With the digital age in full swing, many retailers have reported that their online sales are being boosted by orders made via a tablet, according to the 2012 "State of Retailing Online" survey from Shop.org and Forrester Research.

According to the survey, 49% of retailers said their average order value via a tablet now is higher than traditional Web sales, while nearly 3-in-10 (28%) retailers said they are seeing about the same average order value from tablets as their website. When it came to actual sales retailers are reporting, the survey found tablet and smartphone sales as a percent of retailers’ total Web sales in 2011 were 3.2% and 1.5%, respectively.

Despite these notable increases, 8-in-10 retailers said search and email are the top two drivers of a company’s Web traffic from either a smartphone or tablet. Additionally, retailers surveyed report that, on average, 20% of emails opened in a given campaign are opened on a mobile device. What’s more, when it comes to mobile marketing tools, the majority of retailers (75%) said that they have turned to QR codes and other barcode scanning options to serve as part of advertising and mobile marketing efforts within their stores.

Although many retailers have stepped up their game in the digital space, the survey found retailers still are adjusting to the sea of change that mobile is having on consumer shopping behavior, which, in turn, has influenced retailers’ marketing initiatives. In terms of marketing, retailers said that, on average, 3.9% of their total interactive marketing budgets this year are dedicated to mobile advertising, suggesting a strategy of testing and measuring consumer response.

"Retailers must continue to look for unique ways to elevate their brand in such a competitive market. Tablets and mobile devices offer the perfect answer, with opportunities to create specialized apps, drive Web sales and create an engaging and convenient shopping experience," Shop.org executive director Vicki Cantrell said. "Overall, we expect smartphone shopping adoption rates to stay low but fully believe tablet sales will continue to change how retailers garner the attention of new and current customers. With tablet usage marching towards true ubiquity, retailers will continue to plan ahead by examining their customers’ behaviors and shopping patterns."

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Sam’s Club invests big in small business

BY Gail Hoffer

WASHINGTON — Sam’s Club has pledged more than $2 million in donations to nonprofits supporting small business growth. The announcement was made by Sam’s Club president and CEO Rosalind Brewer.

"At Sam’s Club our small business owners are our partners, and we want to put our money where our mission is — which is to be agents for and support our members and the small business community," said Brewer, addressing guests at the DREAM BIG Small Business of the Year awards luncheon at the Shoreham Hotel. "I realize that I have an incredible opportunity to lead Sam’s Club and to be an advocate for our small business owners in America. You are the heart and soul of our economy, and no one takes more risks and works harder every single day than those of you who are out there following your dreams and running your own businesses."

The luncheon was part of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Small Business Summit, an annual event that draws small business owners and entrepreneurs from across the country to discuss common legislative and management concerns. More than 800 small business owners are attending the summit. Sam’s Club is a diamond sponsor of the event.

The organizations receiving funds are:

  • Accion in the U.S.: $520,674;

  • Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED): $349,545;

  • Count Me In for Women’s Economic Independence: $750,000;

  • National Association for Latino Community Asset Builders: $250,000; and

  • Step Up for Small Business Challenge: $200,000.

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