By Pani Shoja, MD
Medical Director – Urgent Care Hawaii
Early identification and intervention of chronic illness is vital to good health and wellbeing. It also greatly improves treatment outcomes while slowing the progression of serious chronic illness. In the urgent care setting, we are often the first line of defense in healthcare. We created Urgent Care Plus™ to support primary care physicians and consumers with early identification and intervention of chronic disease.
When chronic illness is suspected, we assist in counseling, ordering labs and notifying the primary care physician to facilitate seamless healthcare delivery for the consumer. We also administer immunizations, and coordinate follow up when we note a consumer has gotten off track and needs to reengage with their healthcare provider. (Urgent Care Plus™ is only available at Urgent Care Hawaii.)
We use the newest technology to increase transparency, encourage collaboration and create efficiency in healthcare delivery. Patient portals (to view health records), digital transfer of medical records to healthcare providers, and seamless integration of laboratory results and imaging facilitate convenient and instantaneous sharing of health information. This level of transparency in healthcare delivery which allows for more efficient and timely care, leads to better health outcomes.
The pros and cons of consumer-driven health care.
All healthcare delivery is consumer driven. Individuals who value a healthy lifestyle, good health and integrate self-care into their daily routine have specific patterns of consuming healthcare. They may enter the healthcare system consuming services relative to prevention, early identification and early intervention of chronic illness. They may be well informed about treatment options and choose the least invasive treatment.
Individuals who do not value health and wellness may enter the healthcare system at the level of rehabilitation, surgery or treatment for chronic illness. Pharmaceuticals or more aggressive treatment may be required at that this stage. Each scenario is consumer driven, one is more efficient, less expensive and leads to a higher quality of life and the other is more expensive, less efficient, offers less choice and may have a negative impact on quality of life.
The healthcare system, businesses, employees and family members are all partners on this journey.
The boundaries are blurred; an employee’s productivity and availability to work is tied to their health and access to convenient care. Time off work to receive healthcare means increased costs for business. Employees who neglect their health because they do not want to miss work, increase the cost of care when their illness progresses and requires more than preventative care or maintenance care. The healthcare system is impacted when primary care physicians are held accountable for preventative measures and employees or their families are not able to take time off to get the care required. This cycle of conflict between work, wellness and self-care is one that we will successfully solve together. Innovation in healthcare delivery is as important as other aspects of healthcare transformation.
The landscape of healthcare is changing rapidly, however, the impact of today’s changes will take time to be realized in both healthcare outcomes and fiscal sustainability.
The healthcare crisis has brought with it a great opportunity to transform. Innovation, creativity and revolution are not concepts frequently applied in healthcare. However, these are the ingredients necessary to bring about meaningful and lasting change. Concierge medicine, direct primary care, on site health clinics and urgent care are all new models of healthcare delivery. Ultimately, consumers will choose how they want to consume healthcare and how they want to pay for it. In the meantime, providers, payers and patients are muddling through the changes as we wait to see how the decisions made at a federal level impact our daily lives.
Urgent Care Plus™ is part of the solution.
The primary goal of Urgent Care Hawaii is to bring innovation to healthcare delivery, creating a seamless healthcare experience for consumers. Reducing emergency room use; supporting primary care physicians (PCP) and building a bridge from the urgent care visit back to the PCP are all components of Urgent Care Plus™.
Pani Shoja, MD
Urgent Care Hawaii
About Urgent Care Hawaii: Urgent Care Hawaii medical clinics provide immediate and urgent medical care on Oahu for Pearl City, Honolulu, Waikiki, Waipahu, Aiea, Kapolei, Kunia, Waipio, Makakilo, Halawa, Mililani, Kailua and Ewa Beach. The clinics provide quick and affordable options for people needing immediate medical care and treatment for common or everyday health problems seven days a week – no appointments are necessary. The Pearl City location is certified by The Urgent Care Association of America.
Barbara Howard, BH Marketing/PR
1245 Kuala St., Pearl City, HI 96782
Office: (831) 920-2759
Cell/Text: (831) 521-8608