Colorado Springs Orthopaedic Group has opened a first in the Colorado Springs area: a walk-in clinic devoted to bone and joint injuries.
The group's Express Bone & Joint Injury Care Center opened Monday. Despite an increasingly crowded landscape of urgent care centers and free-standing emergency rooms, "we felt there was a definite need in our community," said Nicole Banning, chief operating officer of CSOG.
"It's definitely an active community," she said. "We wanted to be able to provide efficient, quality care at a lower cost than emergency departments and urgent care centers, so we are charging a specialty office copay instead of facility fees and the fees that an ER would charge."
In a study of a similar express orthopedic care center, savings were as much as 95 percent when compared to treatment at an ER, according to a press release on the new center. Wait time was reduced by as much as 60 percent.
Banning also points to other advantages. The clinic provides a continuity of care with follow-up provided through CSOG. And since it's "ortho specific," treating fractures, sprains and other bone and joint injuries, patients won't be exposed to the flu or other contagious ailments as they might be in an ER or regular urgent care center.
The express care clinic is on the first floor of CSOG's north Colorado Springs offices at 4110 Briargate Parkway, with no appointment needed and extended hours of 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekdays and 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays - "because accidents aren't scheduled," as CSOG's website notes.
The center has been in the works for 16 months, Banning said, and required the hiring of additional staff, including two providers and an X-ray technician. While such centers aren't common, there were others to look at, she said, including OrthoCarolina, with urgent care centers in several locations in North Carolina, and Reno Orthopaedic Clinic, with ROC Express locations in Reno and Sparks, Nev.
"Our patients have been asking us to do something like this for a long time," Banning said.