Care Beyond the Doctor’s Office Is Gaining Ground

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Non-traditional care delivery services are making rapid inroads. According to Accenture’s 2019 Digital Health Consumer Survey, roughly 29 percent of U.S. respondents say they have used some form of virtual care—an increase from 21 percent in 2017—and walk-in/retail clinics have already gone mainstream (47 percent). Many of those who have not used non-tradition care delivery services would be willing to do so.

There is little distinction between consumer preferences for using walk-in channels for flu shots (55 percent vs. 54 percent who would use traditional channels), cold or virus treatment (47 percent vs. 48 percent) or physical injury such as a sprained ankle or backache (41 percent vs. 59 percent). More than one-fifth (21 percent) of U.S. consumers would visit a walk-in clinic for a minor surgery.

Accenture points out that as more patients use, and are satisfied with non-traditional care settings, payers and providers must adapt and consider greater use of digital capabilities, self-service options and more convenient physical locations.