Onsite and near-site clinics are two options that companies can choose from when deciding to offer employer-provided healthcare. Both types of clinics offer many benefits to both employees and the company providing the service. Depending on the specific needs of your company and your employee group, one may offer an advantage over the other.
An onsite clinic is a healthcare facility that resides within a few steps from where everyone sits to work all day long so employees don't have to get into a car to visit their health providers. These are typically a great option for hazardous worksites where workplace injuries are fairly common, but also offer many additional benefits outside of the ability to respond to emergencies.
Onsite Clinic Advantages
Implementing an onsite clinic can be a large up-front investment, especially if you are constructing a new building or space from scratch. However, this also provides your company with the ability to make every single decision regarding layout, design, finishes, as well as provides full control over staffing and the services that will be provided. You are able to discover exactly what your employees need the most and provide that to them directly. Having full control can potentially provide you with long-term cost control as well because you have the final say on every aspect.
Because an onsite clinic is typically within a few steps from where your employees spend all of their time at work, it will produce immediate returns such as less time taken off for doctor visits and increased productivity. There are also longer-term benefits in that your employees will be more likely to visit their healthcare providers more regularly since they can access them so easily. Therefore, your company will have higher levels of health & wellness amongst employees. This can lead to additional increases in productivity and employee retention as well as give your company a leg-up in recruitment.
Because your company will offer this clinic from within the walls of your campus, you have full and complete control over who has access to the services provided by the clinic. You can decide if it is just for your employees, employees plus their dependents and families, or even if you'd like to open it up to additional people such as retired employees or a partner company. This option allows you to have the most control over the population that has access to the clinic therefore having a direct effect on things like wait times, length of appointments, and ability for patients to be able to see their providers often enough to build a relationship and create health maintenance plans.
A Near-Site clinic will not be directly on the work campus, but near enough to be easily accessible during a work day. It may be exclusive to a single company or could be a partnership between multiple organizations. A near-site clinic can also be used to supplement an on-site offering for employees by allowing their families to utilize the near-site clinic. This keeps the patient population for the onsite clinic low and provides a convenient and affordable option for employee's dependents as well.
Near-Site Clinic Advantages
Near-site clinics typically take advantage of an existing building or even a current, operational healthcare facility, which provides a substantial up-front cost saving vs. building and staffing a brand new onsite clinic. It can also offer long-term savings compared to traditional insurance offerings through things like providing services that cater more specifically to your employee's needs, as well as lowering the overall rate of urgent care visits and referrals to specialists.
Great option for smaller companies
If a smaller company with a more limited budget wants to provide employees with excellent, affordable healthcare, the near-site clinic option may allow them to partner up with additional companies that offer an existing clinic to their employees. This saves all parties on operational costs and still provides a conveniently located service that will save employees time and money.
Shared Benefits of Onsite and Near-Site Clinics
Convenience - employees can save their time off instead of using it to see their healthcare providers and companies gain productivity from lower absenteeism
Cost-effectiveness - employer-provided health clinics offer direct cost savings to employees and tend to see savings over time for the company providing the service as well
Improved Health Outcomes - the ease-of-access tends to lead to employees having a greater ability to seek healthcare when necessary and come up with preventative plans. This combined with an overall greater cultural focus on health and wellness typically tend to lead to a healthier workforce
Increased Employee Morale - healthier employees tend to be happier which can lead to increased productivity and even increased employee retention