(ABC4 UTAH) In an effort to reduce unnecessary doctor visits and help patients receive specialized care faster, Intermountain Healthcare opened Southwest Ortho Urgent Care on the St. George Regional Hospital campus.

This is Intermountain’s first orthopedic urgent care center, which will improve access for patients to affordable orthopedic care and specialists.

“When you get injured often the first instinct is to go to the emergency room where you will receive great treatment, but likely be referred to an orthopedist for follow up care,” said Warren Butterfield, MD, Intermountain Healthcare orthopedic surgeon. “Our goal is for patients to skip the extra step and expense of a trip to the emergency room and come straight to us.”

Because it is an urgent care facility, the cost for care can be far more affordable than care in the emergency room. Dr. Butterfield hopes this will be a better option for those with high deductible plans or no insurance at all.

The new center’s physicians and orthopedic specialists can treat torn ligaments, sprains, broken bones, and other common orthopedic injuries not severe enough to require hospital care.

In the past, Dr. Butterfield says he’s had some patients see multiple doctors not knowing for sure where to turn for these types of injuries.

“By having this type of specialized care as a walk-in service we can ensure patients can get properly cared for and on the road to recovery faster,” said Dr. Butterfield. “If the injury is serious enough to require surgery, we can get that scheduled without delay.”

The center also offers onsite x-ray, musculoskeletal ultrasound, and the ability to splint, cast, repair simple lacerations, broken bones, and dislocations.

The Intermountain Southwest Ortho Urgent Care clinic will be open in the evenings, so it’s a convenient option for those injured outside of normal business hours. Depending on the demand for services, those hours could expand in the future.

Intermountain plans to open other ortho urgent care clinics in other parts of Utah the future.

For more information on orthopedic services, click here.

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