Urgent care clinics carve out a key healthcare niche

USA Today, October 11, 2010
In a growing trend, consumers increasingly turning to walk-in clinics and urgent care centers for treatment of minor ailments and injuries instead of trying to squeeze in an appointment with a primary care provider or waiting at a crowded emergency room.

These shifting habits and the rising prominence of clinics and centers are reshaping the health care model that for decades sent patients to their primary care doctors, and if necessary, the emergency room.

In fact, urgent care clinics are getting so popular that a handful of physicians groups and entrepreneurs are starting to franchise them a la McDonald's or Jiffy Lube.

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