Mayor Menino takes a crack at fixing health care

You’d think Boston Mayor Tom Menino could find better things to do with his time than criticize drugstores for wanting to open clinics in their stores. Rather than standing back and letting CVS and others set up the clinics, the mayor decided to set up a task force, which is now recommending a hotline to point patients to primary care physicians who are accepting new patients:

The referral service marks the first tangible result from a task force Menino convened to explore how primary care services can be improved in the city. Menino formed the panel of specialists after state authorities ruled that pharmacies and other stores can open health clinics inside their shops. That decision outraged the mayor, who proclaimed at the time that “allowing retailers to make money off of sick people is wrong.”

There’s nothing wrong with a hotline but unlike the retail clinics it’s not going to solve many problems. Meanwhile it’s kind of pathetic that in Boston of all places it’s not possible to find a doctor.

Maybe the doctor who certified disabled firefighter/professional bodybuilder Albert Arroyo will have a few openings.

August 1, 2008

2 thoughts on “Mayor Menino takes a crack at fixing health care”

  1. I’m no expert in this matter, and it seems to me that market forces should be allowed to prevail or be attempted. If the model works (drugstores wanting to open clinics in their stores), great! If not, move on to something else. I’m wishing Boston the best, from my San Francisco vantage point, and home of Mayor Newsom, who in July 2007, launched “Healthy San Francisco,” ensuring that all 82,000 San Franciscans currently without healthcare insurance are guaranteed comprehensive, high-quality healthcare.

  2. “unlike the retail clinics it’s not going to solve many problems” – I’m not sure how retail clinics are going to solve the problem in the longer run. We don’t just need “anyone” to see these patients but we do need primary care docs that manage their patients health over the long term.

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