OSF HealthCare celebrated the opening of its new OSF Urgo urgent care center Thursday in Ottawa with a ribbon cutting, as well as providing tours of the new facility.
OSF Urgo, 2911 Columbus St. on Ottawa's North Side, is meant to be a quicker walk-in care center for those dealing with minor illnesses or injuries, such as allergies, ear infections or colds.
“We’re making this easier for people by putting these next to a grocery store, next to a church, next to where you’re going to be anyway,” said Karen Brodbeck, OSF's vice president of public relations. “You can either walk in without an appointment or you can make yourself an appointment online using your smartphone or your desktop (computer).”
One of the new features OSF Urgo boasts is the ability to make appointments online without having a previous appointment or having to make a phone call.
“If you can go online and schedule a massage or an appointment for your car, why can’t you go online and schedule a doctor’s appointment?” Brodbeck said. “If you aren’t feeling well, you probably want to start feeling better as soon as possible.”
Brodbeck said the facility's goal is to get people in and out as quickly as possible while providing the best care possible. Urgo facilities also can provide prescriptions as well as have an X-ray machine and EKG machine onsite.
“If you’ve sprained or broken something, we can get you an X-ray,” Brodbeck said. “It’s there to help alleviate the burden on the emergency rooms. It's great for those minor injuries and illnesses.”
Brodbeck said OSF Urgo is meant to complement the services offered by a hospital — instead of going to the emergency room for minor illnesses or injuries, Urgo or Prompt Care (on the south side of Ottawa) can provide faster and less expensive service.
“The ER is great when a situation is truly an emergency,” Brodbeck said. “Urgo can meet your needs proficiently. It's about getting people the care they need at the right place and right time. Urgo is open every day, including holidays and accepts most insurance plans.”
OSF Urgo also allows people who may not want to have a primary care doctor the opportunity to still see a doctor regularly in case of illness.
“Some people don’t care to get established with a primary care provider, maybe that’s not the season of the life that you’re in,” Brodbeck said. “Some people need to access urgent care when they have a minor illness or injury, and this is one place for people to do that.”
The OSF Urgo facility will open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.on Tuesday, April 16 for its first business day.