A new facility opening soon in Blaine will serve people with medical conditions that are not serious enough for an emergency room but still require care unavailable in most medical clinics.
The new facility, called an urgency center, will open in partnership with a clinic in Blaine, said Dr. Amy Kolar, the director of the emergency room at North Memorial Hospital, which is opening the center.
The urgency center will be ideal for people who break a bone or dislocate a shoulder but do not need to be admitted to a hospital, Kolar said.
"A lot of those types of things -- those orthopedic injuries - end up needing sedation," Kolar said. "They need to have their bones set or their shoulder put back in place. And that can't be done at a clinic. It really needs a board-certified, trained emergency physician; the ability to do IVs; a nurse who can handle that. But they can, for the most part, go home."
The doctors and nurses at the center, due to open on April 29, will be able to handle a majority of the types of injuries and conditions people seek help for in emergency rooms.
"We'll have the capability to do high-level diagnostic things such as high-level labs that you wouldn't do at a clinic: MRI, CAT scan, ultrasound," she said. "So we'll be able to function fairly similarly to how we function in the emergency room."
Treatment will cost less than a trip to the emergency room, Kolar said, adding that the center will accept patients with any major insurance provider. Uninsured patients will likely have to pay an up-front fee, she said, but the details were still being worked out.