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Hospitals gamble on urgent care clinics to keep patients healthy

Kaiser Health News, November 9, 2012

Most of the 9,000 urgent care clinics nationwide are owned by corporation or physicians, but hospital systems are increasingly aiming to get a cut of the booming industry. Hospitals already own about 27% of the centers. "We're still in the very early stages of this trend," said om Charland, CEO of Merchant Medicine. "I think we're going to see a lot more hospitals opening urgent care centers, either their first one or you're going to find hospitals who might have one or two opening more." It's still unclear whether hospitals will actually be successful at managing urgent care centers. Hospitals tend to be good at providing high-quality care, but they're not always so good at customer service.