Visits to the emergency room for minor injuries and the hassle of making an appointment with your local physician could soon become a thing of the past for residents West Deptford and Woodbury.
a chain of clinical care facilities, held a pre-opening event at its new location on Route 45 in the Southwood Shopping Center, in a building formerly occupied by Hollywood Video. A large crowd attended the event and got a sneak peek at the facilities before its official opening on Wednesday morning.
Dheeraj Taranath, the regional medical director for MedExpress, was on hand along with other MedExpress employees and executives for the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
“What we're seeing, is there are not enough family doctors, and there's too long of a wait in the emergency room,” Taranath said. “Because of that, people need a place where they can get in and out in a reasonable amount of time. MedExpress will appear in areas where people are in need.”
MedExpress's goal is twofold: to get people the care they need and to get them out fast. Their hope is to relieve hospitals and doctors' offices of congestion by offering care for minor ailments, minor injuries such as sprains or fractures, and minor surgeries.
The facility is equipped with 12 exam rooms, along with a room for X-rays and two rooms with fully operational hospital beds. There is also a procedure room where minor surgeries can be performed.
In addition to treating injuries and illnesses, the center can also perform evaluations and physicals. Taranath said that centers get an influx of high school athletes who need physicals prior to their respective athletic season, mainly because they struggle to get an appointment with their physician.
However, there are a few things that MedExpress won't be able to do.
“What we don't do is chronic-care medicine,” Taranath said. “If someone has a chronic condition, then we want to find them a medical home. Someone who has a chronic condition is someone with diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol.”
In addition, if a patient is found to have a major injury or ailment, the facility will transport them to a local hospital for further care. There are no rooms for patients to have an extended stay.
Taranath said that there was a demand for health care in the Woodbury area and that MedExpress will hopefully provide relief for local physicians and hospitals.
“There's a lot of people that don't have family doctors,” Taranath said. “They're just here because they are sick. To get an appointment with a family doctor, it could be six weeks. By that time, your urinary tract infection could turn into a kidney infection, or your cough will turn into pneumonia.”
MedExpress accepts most insurance, though it will also accept and care for patients who are uninsured. Those patients can self-pay for their care.
MedExpress is open from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily, including on most major holidays. No advance appointment is necessary. For more information, visit the MedExpress website.