IDEAS home Printed from
   My bibliography  Save this article

Medical Service Provision and Costs: Do Walk-In Clinics Differ from Other Primary Care Delivery Settings?


  • Darrel J. Weinkauf
  • Boris Kralj


Reductions in health care funding by both the federal and provincial governments in recent years have focused attention on the cost-effectiveness of health care delivery, particularly on the delivery of primary care services. We use data extracted from the Ontario Health Insurance Plan (OHIP) claims database to assess differences between walk-in clinics and other primary care delivery settings in initial visit costs, follow-up visit costs, service duplication, and diagnoses treated. Our analysis indicates that the generally negative reputation of walk-in clinics is largely underserved. Walk-in clinics differ very little from office-based practices in terms of overall costs, the percentage of patients seen again, and follow-up costs. The relatively high costs of primary care provided in emergency departments combined with the fact that a fairly large share of visits to emergency departments are for self-limiting conditions suggest that patient education on the proper use of emergency departments or providing alternatives, such as telephone triage services, should result in health care cost savings.

Suggested Citation

  • Darrel J. Weinkauf & Boris Kralj, 1998. "Medical Service Provision and Costs: Do Walk-In Clinics Differ from Other Primary Care Delivery Settings?," Canadian Public Policy, University of Toronto Press, vol. 24(4), pages 471-484, December.
  • Handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:24:y:1998:i:4:p:471-484

    Download full text from publisher

    File URL:
    Download Restriction: only available to JSTOR subscribers

    As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to search for a different version of it.

    More about this item


    Access and download statistics


    All material on this site has been provided by the respective publishers and authors. You can help correct errors and omissions. When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:cpp:issued:v:24:y:1998:i:4:p:471-484. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

    For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Prof. Werner Antweiler). General contact details of provider: .

    If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

    We have no references for this item. You can help adding them by using this form .

    If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your RePEc Author Service profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

    Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.

    IDEAS is a RePEc service hosted by the Research Division of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis . RePEc uses bibliographic data supplied by the respective publishers.