Ever thought of opening an employee health center? Businesses are doing it more often than you think, and we expect it to increase… even now.

April 28th, 2020

The recent events of the world around COVID-19 has made us stop and rethink everything we do in business. Right now, many of our clients are evaluating their employee healthcare plans and budgets and looking at how they could lower the cost and provide a better plan.

In this economy, some people might think it is impossible to lower healthcare spend and maintain, or even better, healthcare. But it is. I’m going to put an idea in front of you that seems crazy at first.

Open your own healthcare clinic for employees.

These employee-sponsored clinics keep gaining popularity among spend-conscious employers, and we think they will look even more appealing after this recent event. At EBMS, we have one. And we’ve set up dozens across the country. They work, they save money, and they make employees happy. Here’s why.

Workers love the convenience of these primary-care facilities at or near the workplace that make it easy to access the health services they need. At my company, our miCare Health Centers encourage employees to participate more actively in their own healthcare. When we set up our health center, common barriers to service were removed – from deductibles to crowded waiting rooms – enhancing the personal healthcare experience of our employees. Satisfaction scores reflect that positive experience.

Employers love on-site health centers, too.

These employer-provided centers reduce expenses as employers buy healthcare at cost rather than paying traditional fee-for-service rates. The savings add up. These clinics are successful because they follow a patient-centric model focused on coordinated care, not the fragmented, episodic healthcare delivery that is so common today.

In addition to providing a personal navigator-coach for each patient who integrates their care, there are other ways that many of these employer-sponsored centers improve upon traditional care delivery systems.

Take the case of Robert, who has a healthcare issue that just developed. Here’s a step-by-step example how an employee health center works for him.

  • Robert calls the center located at his workplace and is encouraged to come right away. He arrives within a few minutes and checks in.
  • Robert first sees his coach, Paul, to discuss his concerns, share his symptoms and have vital signs checked. In reviewing Robert’s medical history, Paul sees that it is time for a flu shot and arranges for that to happen during this visit.
  • A doctor then meets with Robert in an exam that does not seem hurried or impersonal. Robert has blood drawn for lab work performed on site.
  • Robert gets his flu shot, receives a prescription refill to take with him and is back in his office just 90 minutes since he first called.
  • The next day, Robert receives a call from Paul, his coach. He says the doctor would like him to see a specialist. Paul coordinates all the outside care and then monitors Robert’s progress and follow-up care at his on-site health center.
  • Robert is feeling much better after receiving care from the specialist. His coach and doctor continue to track his progress toward a full recovery.

Robert’s experience shows the tremendous value an employee health center offers.

  • Improved access (he was in and out in less than two hours and back to work)
  • Increased savings
  • Employee retention
  • Prescription cost savings
  • Reduced absenteeism
  • Greater employee productivity

From our own experience creating an employee health center and launching many others, we know they make primary care more affordable, accessible, and personalized. I know that at our center, the team of healthcare professionals works to ensure that no one slips through the cracks.

Better employee care at a lower cost. That’s what businesses are looking for.