Urgent care begins at Milford Medical Center

MILFORD – On Sunday, Dec. 8, the emergency room at Milford Medical Center became an urgent care facility, and according to Sheila Caron, spokeswoman for St. Joseph Hospital, the owner of Milford Medical Center, 21 people used the facility between the opening hours of 9 a.m. and 9 p.m.

Caron also answered questions for those who are unfamiliar with urgent care.

Q. What is the typical insurance reimbursement for an urgent care visit?

A. Typically, urgent care or walk-in clinic visits are less costly than an emergency department visit. Each insurer, including Medicare and Medicaid, reimburses differently based on the plan an individual participates in. As when seeking any medical care, patients must confirm with their insurance carrier their specific co-pay and deductible amounts.

Q. Are urgent care visits covered by Medicare?

A. St. Joseph Hospital has and will continue to accept Medicare at our hospital sites and within our provider network, including at the Milford Medical Center. Questions about what and how Medicare covers specific services should be directed to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid.

Q. Along with Dr. James Martin, what other staff will be in Milford, and when will he be in Milford?

A. The Milford Medical Center Urgent Care will be staffed by board certified physicians with experience in either urgent care medicine, emergency medicine or both. The use of Advanced Practice Providers (physician assistants, nurse practitioners) is common in the urgent care setting. This is being considered as well. Dr. Martin serves as the medical director for both the Emergency Department at St. Joseph Hospital and the Urgent Care at Milford Medical Center. He works clinical shifts at both facilities.

Q. What diagnostic equipment is there?

A. There will be continued availability of standard X-rays and limited availability of ultrasound at Milford Medical Center. Urgent Care will have limited diagnostic laboratory studies available, such as Rapid Strep testing, urine dip, urine pregnancy, fingerstick blood glucose, basic chemistries and hemoglobin/hematocrit.

As we have in the past at the Milford Medical Center, we will continue to offer lab draw capabilities, X-ray, ultrasound and digital mammography.

Q. What would be the typical wait time? If not for here, for urgent care in general?

A. Wait times at urgent care centers vary and currently, there is no statewide agency that tracks and collects urgent care wait times for all centers. At St. Joseph Hospital, our emergency department wait times are among the best in the state. We will continue to move people through our Urgent Care in Milford as quickly and as safely as possible.

The center, at 444 Nashua St., is open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., seven days a week, 365 days a year.