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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2009 Jul;57(7):1293-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2009.02314.x. Epub 2009 Jun 3.

Senior health clinics: are they financially viable?

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Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, Arkansas, USA.


Are hospital-based outpatient interdisciplinary clinics a financially viable alternative for caring for our burgeoning population of older adults in America? Although highly popular, with high patient satisfaction rates among older adults and their families, senior health clinics (SHCs) can be expensive to operate, with limited quantifiable health outcomes. This study analyzed three geriatric hospital-based interdisciplinary clinics in rural Arkansas by examining their patient profiles, revenues, and expenses. It closely examined the effects of the downstream revenue using the multiplier effect and acknowledged other factors that weigh heavily on the success of SHCs and the care of older adults. The findings highlight the similarities and differences in the three clinics' operating and financial structures in addition to the clinics' and providers' productivity. The analysis presents an evidence-based illustration that SHCs can break even or lose large amounts of money.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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