WOONSOCKET, R.I. and CHATTANOOGA, Tenn., June 26, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- MinuteClinic, the retail health care division of CVS Caremark (NYSE: CVS) and Parkridge Health System, a division of HCA/TriStar, have partnered to enhance access to high quality, affordable health care services in Bradley, Hamilton and Marion counties. Under the partnership agreement, Parkridge Health System physicians will serve as medical directors for seven MinuteClinic walk-in medical clinics. The clinics are open seven days a week inside select CVS/pharmacy stores in Chattanooga, Hixson, and Signal Mountain as well as MinuteClinic's newest location in Cleveland, which opened June 21. In addition, MinuteClinic and Parkridge Health System will collaborate on patient education and disease management initiatives and will inform patients of the services each offer. Parkridge Health System will accept patients who need a level of care that is not provided among MinuteClinic services. MinuteClinic will inform patients about the affiliation with Parkridge Health System. MinuteClinic also has a clinical affiliation with TriStar Health for its clinics in Nashville and Middle Tennessee. "As we have experienced with TriStar Health in Nashville and in other communities in the U.S., strategic clinical affiliations between MinuteClinic and health systems such as Parkridge enhance our ability to extend high quality medical services to patients in convenient retail locations near where they live and work," said Andrew Sussman, M.D., President, MinuteClinic and Senior Vice President/Associate Chief Medical Officer, CVS Caremark. "We look forward to having Parkridge Health System physicians collaborate with MinuteClinic nurse practitioners to provide quality oversight, teaching and back-up so MinuteClinic can provide the best care at the lowest overall cost for patients and employers." Parkridge Health System operates Parkridge Medical Center and Parkridge East Hospital as well as Parkridge Valley, a two-campus behavioral health facility. More than 600 physicians in the Chattanooga area are affiliated with Parkridge Health System. "The alliance between Parkridge Health System and MinuteClinic provides patients in our area with a comprehensive continuum of care," said Darrell Moore, President and CEO of Parkridge Health System. "It ensures that individuals have access to the level of medical treatment appropriate for their condition. Our facilities and staff are fully committed to providing all patients with the highest quality care." Parkridge Health System, the first hospital system in the area to implement electronic health records, will work with MinuteClinic to streamline communication around all aspects of each individual's care. With patient permission, MinuteClinic will electronically share medical histories and visit summaries with Parkridge Health System hospitals and affiliated physicians. In the meantime, MinuteClinic will continue its standard practice of sending patient visit summaries to primary care providers via fax or mail, typically within 24 hours, with patient consent.