Centura Health closes urgent care center at Purgatory Resort – The Journal
Durango EMS teams expect increased call volume this winter
Centura Health will no longer operate an urgent care center at Purgatory Resort, according to the resort’s general manager.
David Rathbun declined to discuss the details of the closure, but he said Purgatory would maintain a similar level of emergency care even without urgent care.
“While we are disappointed to lose such a strong and stable partner in Centura Mercy as a clinic and emergency care provider for North La Plata County, we will continue to maintain a similar level of emergency care for resort guests through our professional ski patrol team, Durango Fire Protection District Station 15 is located 10 minutes from the resort base and critical care air ambulance coverage is provided by Centura’s Flight For Life Lifeguard 5 helicopter serving the emergency department at Mercy Medical Center in Durango,” Rathbun, the station’s general manager, said in an email to The Herald of Durango.
A spokeswoman for Centura Health did not respond to a request for comment.
Mercy Urgent Care was staffed by nurse practitioners and emergency room nurses, with support from emergency physicians at Mercy Hospital, according to the Purgatory website. It offered digital x-rays and limited lab services.
Rathbun declined to release data on how often the clinic is used and for what types of injuries or medical emergencies.
Scott Sholes, EMS chief for the Durango Fire Protection District, said closing the clinic could put a strain on EMS crews. DFPD has already started discussing how to prepare for an influx of calls this winter.
“I’m very disappointed with this decision,” Sholes said. “There appears to be no plan to reopen, which certainly has the potential effect of increasing ambulance call volumes.”
Purgatory is about as far north as Durango EMS services, so it puts units out of service for longer periods of time, Sholes said. Basic EMS teams also lack training in returning dislocated bones to their normal position, and transporting patients over long distances with dislocated joints can increase the level of pain people feel, it said. -he declares.
The Mercy Urgent Care Center also treated residents of Silverton, which kept them from having to travel all the way to Durango for some services, Sholes said.
“It’s a loss of care that I don’t think anyone has considered,” he said.
On a positive note, Centura Health’s departure from Purgatory Resort gives EMS teams more flexibility in deciding where to take patients once they are transported off the mountain and into Durango, Sholes said.
“We are now able to take orthopedic patients to Animas Surgical Hospital, which is much closer, instead of going all the way to Mercy Hospital as there will be no more provider-to-provider transfers. “, did he declare. “So that’s something.”