Amazon and Walmart are battling it out for control over America’s consumers, and one of the next major frontiers is health care. In response to the rising numbers of poor people and the inability of most people to do basic things such as see a doctor or go to the dentist without completely impoverishing themselves, Walmart is opening up clinics at stores where people can, by appointment or walk-in, have a doctor appointment or a teeth cleaning for $25 to $30 according to Bloomberg.
Here, as in thousands of other communities across America, the local Walmart fulfills most everyday needs—groceries, car repairs, money transfers, even hair styling. But now visitors to the Calhoun Walmart can also get a $30 medical checkup or a $25 teeth cleaning, or talk about their anxieties with a counselor for $1 a minute.
Prices for those services and more are clearly listed on bright digital billboards in a cozy waiting room inside a new Walmart Health center. Walk-ins are welcome, but most appointments are booked online beforehand. No insurance? No problem. Need a lab test on a Sunday? Sure thing. (source)
Americans are getting a lot poorer. The statistics bear this out and there is no way to deny it. The medical industry has been one of the biggest problems that has plagued the country, as most bankruptcies are due to medical issues. In response to this, the fact that Wal-Mart is moving into consumer health care at such low prices is a major trend for the future.
It may take a long time, but this will likely force lower prices for many healthcare bills and possibly a review of how the insurance system works, since if people can pay cash for the same treatments, why do they want to overpay for insurance, which is often the largest bill for any employee’s check?