Kinwell primary care clinics
Premera members have almost exclusive access to Kinwell primary care clinics located in strategic locations around Washington. Wait times for appointments are as little as 24 hours.
Access to care
Increasing access to primary care led Premera to embark on its most significant healthcare investment: the creation of Kinwell primary care. This independent network of clinics will operate 17 facilities across Washington in 2023. According to a recent survey by AMN Healthcare,* new patients in 15 major cities waited an average of 20 days to see a primary care physician. Kinwell patients can often book appointments for the same or next business day. In 2023, Kinwell will also launch a statewide virtual clinic that will serve Premera members wherever they live in Washington.
Keeping employees healthy
Kinwell expands the range of services typically available in a primary care setting. By taking a holistic approach to healthcare, Kinwell clinicians treat common ailments and injuries as well as manage chronic conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and depression. Health coaches help patients achieve sensible goals in nutrition and fitness. Integrated behavioral health professionals provide tools and tactics to manage life’s rough patches. Providers emphasize preventive care, promote healthy lifestyle decisions, and partner with patients in a sympathetic, non-judgmental manner. An ongoing dialogue between clinician and patient can improve health outcomes and reduce expensive visits to urgent care clinics or hospital emergency rooms.
The best health plans in the world are of little use if your employees can’t find a nearby clinic or must wait weeks to see a doctor. Consolidation in the healthcare industry, the aging and retirement of providers, and the strain of the COVID-19 pandemic has reduced primary care options. According to a 2017 study by the Association of American Medical Colleges, the United States will face a shortage of up to 124,000 physicians by 2034.* To address this trend, Premera has committed $58 million since 2018 to improve access to primary care, including in rural communities, increasing the number of providers available to Washington patients.
*AMN Healthcare Survey: Physician Appointment Wait Times Up 8% from 2017, Up 24% from 2004.” Merritt Hawkins, 12 Sept. 2022, https://www.merritthawkins.com/physician-appointment-wait-times-up-from-2017/ .