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One-stop clinic to open in new Target store

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By Jeff Hansel

jhansel@postbulletin.com

There’s a new type of medicine coming to Rochester: a medical service called Target Clinic.

The retailer is building a new Target store along U.S. 63 in south Rochester.

"A Target Clinic will open in the new store," said Brie Heath, a Target spokeswoman.

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The retail chain’s medical clinic will offer set rates for specific services, like $59 for a strep throat check and $49 for treatment of an ear infection or sports physical. A visit to an internist in Washington, D.C., can cost $60 to $70, according to the National Coalition on Health Care.

No retail stores in Rochester offer medical clinics. But both Mayo Clinic and Olmsted Medical Center are eyeing the future.

"Mayo Clinic is developing new models for providing care to its employees and the community, including models that address the community’s needs for convenience, efficiency and cost while focusing on improving the health of the population," said Adam Brase, a Mayo spokesman.

OMC will also evaluate health delivery systems, said Tim Weir, Olmsted’s chief administrative officer.

"Olmsted Medical Center recognizes the growing trend across the country by private retail and other corporate entities to establish health-care clinics that provide minimal walk-in medical services to community residents," he said. "It is not unreasonable to assume that these clinics will continue to flourish, as patients and consumers grow increasingly concerned with the cost of health care and continue to evaluate their options for their various health-care needs."

A Fairview Health Services doctor will provide Target’s local oversight of the new clinic, Heath said, and patients’ results will be sent to their primary doctors. But Weir expressed concern.

"It is our belief that a store-based medical clinic that is developed and operated by a national retail chain without the necessary relationship with local providers for clinical and quality oversight fails to provide the full spectrum of care that our patients expect," he said.

The new Target store will open by October, Heath said. The Target store in north Rochester has no plans for a clinic, she said, because of space constraints.

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A recruitment company came to Rochester on Thursday seeking what is expected to be fewer than 15 employees to staff the new medical clinic, including patient assistants who will help streamline insurance filing. Heath wasn’t sure if any of the other 13 Target Clinics in Minnesota are recruiting.

Clinics that focus on treating a limited number of conditions are new to the health-care market, Brase said.

The Target Clinic, while new to Rochester, isn’t the only one in the area. Albert Lea Medical Center, which is part of Mayo Health System, operates an Express Care Clinic in the Albert Lea Northbridge Mall."

Early this year, Jay Fotland, a family nurse practitioner, opened the JAY Clinic in northwest Rochester, which offers appointment-free care for common ailments. The clinic’s focus is on people who need a quick visit for health problems that often don’t require a physician’s attention.

For more information about the Target Clinic and other one-stop clinics, go to postbulletin.com/weblinks.

Target Clinic

http://sites.target.com/site/en/spot/page.jsp?title=clinic_servicefees

The JAY Clinic:

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http://www.thejayclinic.com/

Albert Lea Medical Center’s Express Care Clinic:

http://mhs.mayo.edu/mhs/live/page.cfm?pp=locations/locationhome.cfm&orgid=AL&affid=3515200000000123&nav=Hom

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