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CDC and Retail Health Clinic Leaders Explore Improving Prevention, Surveillance and Emergency Response

PHILADELPHIA, April 15 /PRNewswire/ -- The Convenient Care Association (CCA), a non-profit organization representing the rapidly growing retail-based clinic industry, today announces it is in ongoing discussions with leaders and scientists from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to explore partnership opportunities to expand avenues for delivering preventive health services.

During a recent meeting, the group also explored the potential involvement of retail-based convenient care clinics in the nation's network of surveillance systems for detection and response to disease outbreaks and crises. In addition to detection, this network would offer many new venues for dispensing countermeasures.

"To date the convenient care industry has recorded three million visits and is expected to serve an additional 3.5 million consumers by 2009. Currently consisting of nearly a thousand clinics in 36 states, the number of clinics is expected to double by the end of 2009," said CCA Executive Director Tine Hansen-Turton.

"CCA is pleased that these discussions are underway, as this represents an important opportunity to leverage our national network of easily accessible healthcare facilities to improve public health outcomes and reduce costs," said CEO of RediClinic and President of the CCA Web Golinkin.

"Our ability to see early indicators of infection in easily accessed and diverse locations around the country makes us a strong ally for public health," noted CEO of MinuteClinic Michael Howe. "In addition, in the event of a health crisis, our locations and distribution systems are well-suited for the rapid delivery of countermeasures."

These opportunities are supported by research from the New England Complex Systems Institute that documents the need for a network that can deliver high-volume, low-complexity, high-impact preventive services. "The characteristics of the retail-based convenient care clinics match this need," according to president of the institute Yaneer Bar-Yam, Ph.D. "Their distinct capabilities complement those of traditional providers."

Bradley A. Perkins, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer for CDC adds, "I am excited and optimistic about the potential for collaborating with CCA to increase access to preventive services for the nation's population routinely as well as in times of crisis."

SOURCE Convenient Care Association
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