With a third location opening today, Mercy has plans to open another eight walk-in clinics in Oklahoma Walmarts over the next year. The goal: to make it easier for Oklahomans to access quality health care. The newest addition, at 7800 N.W. Expressway in Oklahoma City, opened today.
The Clinic at Walmart provides convenient, neighborhood care, as well as a connection to Mercy’s integrated electronic health record to ensure greater safety in patient care. In addition, the walk-in clinics – open seven days a week and owned and operated by Mercy – provides both “get well” and “stay well” services. A set price list allows patients to know costs up front for ailments and diagnostic tests.
Staffed with Mercy physician assistants and nurse practitioners, the clinics are located inside Walmarts and are open extended hours, weekends and holidays with no appointment necessary. Services include:
“Our new model of partnership with hospitals provides access to quality health care for folks who don’t want to wait in a busy emergency room or can’t get in to see their physician,” said Dr. John Agwunobi, Walmart’s senior vice president and president, health and wellness.
Cullen Thomas, M.D., president of Mercy Clinic, strongly agrees.
“This has the potential to decrease the pressure on emergency rooms and ultimately decrease overall health care costs,” Dr. Thomas said. “It also provides Oklahomans with a convenient, affordable, quality option.”
More than 60 percent of people who use a retail clinic nationwide don’t have a regular doctor. For Oklahoma – ranked highest in some of the nation’s worst health statistics – preventive care is critical in reversing statewide trends.
“It’s a sobering reality that medical care is fragmented across our nation,” said Di Smalley, president of Mercy in Oklahoma. “We have to find new ways to get health care to our communities. Our partnership with Walmart and our electronic health record are just some of the ways Mercy is connecting the dots so care doesn’t fall through the cracks.”
With a $450 million investment in an integrated electronic health record (EHR), Mercy can track medical care at any of Mercy’s 28 hospitals and numerous other medical facilities in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Kansas and Missouri. Mercy is one of only 3 percent of hospitals nationwide with an integrated EHR.
“Everything is tied together and that makes these clinics very unique,” said David Tew, Mercy’s chief operating officer in Oklahoma. “If you live in Springfield, Mo., but your child is going to school at UCO in Edmond and they visit Mercy’s Walmart clinic or Mercy’s ER, the medical team can see everything in their medical record. They know if they are deathly allergic to a certain drug, if they just had medical tests performed and all the information is safe and secure.”
While Walmart currently has 97 clinics in 21 states, Mercy’s three clinics in Edmond and Oklahoma City are the first in the metro (and in the state, Duncan Regional Hospital is the only other facility to have partnered with Walmart). Mercy Walmart partnerships include: 7800 N.W. Expressway in Oklahoma City; 2000 W. Memorial Road in Oklahoma City; 2200 W. Danforth Road in Edmond; and one in Berryville, Ark.
“When the first five Sisters of Mercy rolled into Indian Territory in a covered wagon in the late 1800s, they were determined to fill the gap,” Smalley said. “Once again, Mercy is meeting the challenges of America’s health care head-on by providing more ways for Oklahomans to access care.”