COVID-19 Healthcare Urgency Report Highlights Americans’ Preference for Urgent Care Clinics Over Hospitals

COVID-19 Healthcare Urgency Report Highlights Americans’ Preference for Urgent Care Clinics Over Hospitals

American healthcare consumers remain hesitant about reentering hospitals and instead are looking to urgent care clinics to aid in health-related needs, according to Deputy’s COVID-19 Healthcare Urgency Report. The report also reveals that many Americans question the validity of the emergency authorization of three vaccines, despite mounting evidence of efficacy and recommendations by the CDC.

The uncertainty may stem from the fact that 42 percent of respondents incorrectly believed only hospitals can administer the COVID-19 vaccine, indicating a significant knowledge gap among Americans. Americans have largely avoided hospital settings for the last year: 35 percent have done so for fear of contracting COVID-19, and 44 percent said they did not want to clog their hospital’s patient load.

Instead, healthcare consumers in the US are opting for urgent care facilities or healthcare clinics. The urgent care market is currently worth $29.2B, up three percent since last year. Urgent care facilities — which have existed for the last half-century in the US — have become increasingly popular with younger generations that are unlikely to schedule visits with a general practitioner. In fact, urgent care serves 89 million patients per year, including over 29 percent of all preliminary care visits in the US.

In the last year, pharmaceutical companies have partnered with the US government to create and roll out vaccinations for COVID-19. They’ve seen incredible success in flattening infection rates as 331 million vaccinations have been administered across the country, and 13.5 percent of the US is now fully vaccinated — with eligibility expanding daily.

Despite this, some Americans are still raising questions about how quickly Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson have manufactured COVID-19 vaccines in the last year. Deputy’s survey reports that about half of those surveyed cited fear of side effects as a vaccination concern, 43 percent cited vaccine safety, and another 38 percent said they were concerned with vaccine effectiveness. Further, 66 percent of respondents plan to get vaccinated once they’re eligible and 23 percent don’t plan on vaccinating at all. The remaining 12 percent are unsure if they will vaccinate.

“Clinics have seen a rise in popularity consistently over the years, and have really taken off during the pandemic as many Americans feel less exposed going to a smaller clinic over a hospital,” said Dave Zinman, Global President, Deputy. “Deputy has seen a rise in clinician accounts activated, driven not only by consumer demand, but the need for practice owners to streamline operations and create thriving workplaces.

“Although it’s widely understood that administrative tasks are the norm when you own or run a practice, your doctor, vet, or dentist didn’t go to medical school because they were passionate about operating a business. Instead, they are passionate about providing medical care in their community. Our scheduling software is perfectly positioned to help reduce administrative burden, providing medical teams with much-needed flexibility and functionality, so they can provide better patient care.”

The COVID-19 Healthcare Urgency report was commissioned by Deputy and conducted by OnePoll. The poll included a census-balanced study of 2,000 Americans and inquired about topics like, essential worker treatment, hazard pay, minimum wage, current hazard pay legislation, and more.

This random double-opt-in survey was conducted by OnePoll – a market research company and corporate member of both the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR) – and adheres to the MRS code of conduct. For more information about OnePoll’s research in the media, find its portfolio here.