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Walmart: “The Doctor Is In!” For $40.

Written by Gary North on October 18, 2014

Price competition has just taken a giant step forward in medical care. Walmart is getting into the clinic business.

This will be mass production.  Most people are within a short drive of a Walmart.

Medicare people can get in. Walmart will not be taking other medical insurance except for its in-house program. This means reduced paperwork.

This will take out the bottom of the market for physicians. Now physicians will have to specialize . . . or join an HMO.

This is all the medical care most people need most of the time. They just want to be told that they are not really seriously sick. For $40, they can find out.These days, they pay high prices at a standard physician’s office. Soon, they will walk in and find out what they need to know for $40. In 80% of the cases, they will not need any additional care. If the Walmart physician sees there is a problem, he can refer the patient to a specialist.

This is bad news for local walk-in clinics. The competition just ramped up a notch.  No, four notches. The biggest retailer of all is about to show up in the neighborhood.

This is great news for customers. It is good news for young physicians who are not in debt for medical school, and who want upper-middle-class income. They will be able to find employment locally.

For general practice physicians with debt, it’s a warning call: “Your career strategy just changed.” Think “rural America.”

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11 thoughts on “Walmart: “The Doctor Is In!” For $40.

  1. Denver Kitty says:

    This is a definitive money-maker for Walmart!!

  2. Hopefully you can actually see an MD or Physician and not a Physician's Assistant or Nurse Practitioner

  3. kc135topboom says:

    Frankly I don't want to be seen by a $15 per hour Physician who must see 20 patients per hour. Any prescriptions he/she may prescribe will be filled at that same store. Have you ever filled a prescription at Wal-Mart? It takes hours, compared to 10 minutes at CVS.
    Sooner or later Wal-Mart will be forced to take Medicaid and Obamacare patients. The wait time to see the doctor will be longer than in a big city emergency room. Wal-Mart will figure out how to allow patients to continue shopping while they wait for hours. They will set up the "waiting room" in the electronics and TV department, with people fighting over what show they want on the TV displays. Meanwhile some punk kids will be playing rap "music" on demo stereo systems, at 165 db levels. Unsupervised kids will be fighting over playing demo game systems.
    No thank you, Wal-Mart. This may eventually force me to shop at Target, just for the piece and quite.

  4. kc135topboom says:

    Nothing wrong with PAs. One saved my life.

  5. I actually prefer PAs or NPs to MDs.

  6. Except for self-destructive lifestyles, if your doctor was really taking care of you, the only documents in your medical folder should be a birth certificate and a death certificate. If your folder is 3 inches thick, your doctor is using you as an ATM machine!

  7. If the free market is allowed to work, it should be a money maker for everyone – consumers, healthcare professionals, Walmart and the taxpayers.

  8. Anonymous Coward says:

    This could be bad for Wal-Mart. Think "Ebola-Mart".

  9. jheasler12175 says:

    Let's see how long it takes the Feds to try to shut down the competition from Wal-Mart. If they do, it will point out the hypocrisy of the administration's and Progressive's contention that the intent of the Unaffordable Care Act is to provide low cost healthcare to all. It is really about forcing everybody under the all inclusive government control of their healthcare as well as 16 percent of the national economy. Just one question for all of the obamacare supporters out there, "How's it working out for you?"

  10. If the goal is to determine if you're sick enough to see a doctor, then there won't be any doctors in Walmarts. You'll be seen by a Physician's Assistant, or an RN, neither of which is going to be doing any prescribing, only some referring, or maybe a few stitches. That's how it works at the CVS clinics – or at least at the one I went to a few months back. So this program is neither 'new' nor revolutionary – unless of course there are real doctors there.

  11. ever been to a mnajor high priced clinic, the local GP, or a hosptial clinic? Most times a LPN or NP or PA is the first one you see, and often the last and only. So, the problem is…..?