Healthscreen opens medical clinics in Loblaws outlets
By Karen Gersohn
Healthscreen Solutions Inc., of St. Catharines, Ont., a leading
developer of physician office software, has expanded its operations by
opening several walk-in and full service medical clinics at Loblaws
Healthscreen announced the opening of its first Primacy Medical Clinic
-- located within the new Zehrs Real Canadian Superstore, in St
Catharines, in July 2004. Since then, the company has taken over the
operation of two more Primacy clinics located in Loblaws supermarkets,
in Leamington and Cambridge, Ont., and will soon be running a Windsor
Healthscreen also owns and operates several walk-in clinics that are not
part of the Primacy/Loblaws partnership.
Primacy Management Inc., a Canadian management company, has an exclusive
agreement with Loblaws Companies Ltd. to establish and administer
clinics in their supermarkets across Canada. Loblaws is the largest food
retailer in Canada, with over 10,900 supermarkets operating under
various banners, including the Atlantic Superstore, Dominion, Fortinos,
Loblaws, No Frills, Valu-Mart, Real Canadian Superstore and other
John Boag, president of Primacy, said the clinics were offered to
Healthscreen because “they saw that the sites had the potential to
provide good care to a high volume of customers,” and they are committed
to providing extended hours and seven days a week coverage. “They have a
good network of physicians and they have a good reputation for patient
Primacy Management has 21 clinics operating in Loblaws stores in
Ontario, eastern and western Canada; eight more will be opening over the
next few months.
Dr Bruce Rosenberg, CEO of Healthscreen Solutions, said it’s important
for a medical practice to have a high-traffic location. “Loblaws knows
how to pick great locations, they know where the people are.”
Not to mention the convenience for patients, who are now able to attend
to their health and shopping needs at one accessible location. According
to Boag, there is no better location than a Loblaws. “Most of them have
fitness centres, they have pharmacies, they have healthy eating, and
organic product lines and on top of that, they have banking and other
He pointed out that patients, doctors and staff of the clinics located
in grocery stores have access to free parking, good security and in some
of the stores, community centres. The clinic in St Catharines has three
family physicians operating a family practice, a laboratory, and a
growing walk-in clinic, which makes use of additional physicians.
Boag said Primacy does not specify what software, if any, should be used
in the clinics.
For its part, Healthscreen supplies its Electronic Medical Records (EMR)
software to all its physicians in its Primacy clinics.
According to Dr Rosenberg, the software allows the physicians to
practice more effectively and efficiently. “Healthscreen is easy to use,
and we have so many different ways that we can use it. Physicians can do
all, some, or none of the actual data entry themselves, and still end up
with an electronic record.”
He added that, “Over 30 doctors work at the Healthscreen Niagara
Clinics, and some of them are very computer-literate and some are not,
and yet we are still completely paperless.” In a paperless office, he
noted, records are never lost and time is not wasted on filing and
searching for records.
Patient records can be accessed remotely between Healthscreen’s clinics,
but only with the patient’s permission. Dr Rosenberg said that the
clinics are linked electronically to all the major laboratories in
“All of our lab results are downloaded, and we are able to receive some
diagnostic imaging reports electronically. It is an ongoing effort for
us to try and get more linkages to more and more information sources.
One of our locations does have an electronic line to a drugstore, but
none of our Primacy sites does at this time”
Dr Rosenberg, a practicing physician, says his electronic medical
records company originally “started as a hobby and grew into a business.
Now over 5,000 physicians are using the software.” In addition to
Ontario, Healthscreen is also active in Saskatchewan and British
Columbia, and is currently making the move to supply software solutions
in the United States.
Dr Rosenberg said there are two sites in New York State that will soon
be running Healthscreen software.