By Elise Viebeck - 06/12/13 01:11 PM EDT
"Although primary care physicians and hospitals once regarded retail clinics as a business threat, in a post-reform landscape, they are viewed as critical to facilitating future growth,” Safavi said in a statement.
"Retail clinics will reduce capacity constraints by referring lower-acuity patients to clinics while ensuring hospitals have capacity for more complex cases."
The Affordable Care Act's biggest provisions take effect next year, and an influx of new patients could hit providers as early as the spring.
According to the report, new retail-based clinics will add capacity for 10.8 million patient visits per year by 2015. The trend is expected to drive about $800 million in savings, since clinics cost less than other medical venues.