OrthoExpress is a division of Cedar Valley Medical Specialists, and is the area’s only walk-in urgent care clinic specializing exclusively in orthopedics. The clinic is dedicated to sports, recreation and work injuries related to muscles, ligaments, bones and joints. For patients, that means strains, sprains, breaks or fractures no longer have to mean a costly trip to the emergency room.
“A lot of patients go to the ER for a twisted ankle or other injuries related to sports, falls or other mishaps,” says Dr. Roswell Johnston of OrthoExpress. “Depending on the injury, a referral may be made to see an orthopedic specialist, and it may take a while to schedule and get an appointment. We saw an opportunity to change and streamline that whole process, and that sparked the idea for OrthoExpress.”
Dr. Todd Johnston explains that when patients come to OrthoExpress, they can walk in with no appointment during normal business hours (currently Monday through Friday from 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.) — just like they would at the emergency room. The big difference is that they get to see a specialist first — a provider specializing exclusively in orthopedics. “Because patients don’t have to delay orthopedic evaluation and treatment, this can often lead to faster recovery times,” he says.
When comparing the cost of an emergency room visit to a walk-in clinic visit, the savings can be huge. Dr. Benjamin Torrez emphasizes, “The difference can be hundreds of dollars or more, depending on what you are being seen for.”
Another advantage OrthoExpress offers is its relationship with ADI (Advanced Diagnostic Imaging). In fact, OrthoExpress is actually located in the ADI Building, just off San Marnan Drive in the Tower Park complex in Waterloo. Dr. Jeffrey Clark says, “Working with ADI is a real benefit to our patients. If imaging or scans are needed, our imaging partner is right there in the same building. ADI is widely known as one of the area’s leading imaging experts, but many are surprised to learn their services are typically offered at some of the lowest costs in the area for CT scans, X-rays, MRIs and ultrasounds — which saves OrthoExpress’ patients even more.”
Dr. Arnold Delbridge emphasizes that for some injuries, the emergency room is still the place to visit first. “Patients should use their best judgment. For true, trauma-related and other serious injuries, the emergency room is definitely appropriate. For most other injuries where you’re not sure if it’s a sprain, strain, break or fracture, OrthoExpress' orthopedic specialists can evaluate and treat you quickly and effectively.”
“We see people for torn ligaments; painful, swollen and injured joints; muscle and back pain; and foot, ankle, shoulder, knee, hand and wrist injuries,” says Dr. Robert Bartelt. “Basically anything sports, play, and work-related.”