A business hoping to redefine the urgent care experience for patients and physicians opened in Kent Jan. 28.
Doctors Express caters to patients who can’t be seen by their own physicians or don’t want to go to the emergency room. The goal of the business is to offer affordable, non-emergency treatment to anyone in need, thereby eliminating long waits associated with doctor’s office or emergency room visits.
“What’s attractive about this place is that it’s a one-stop shop,” said Dr. David Platt. “People can come in here and get evaluated by certified doctors, get X-rays and get their prescriptions.”
This is the second location of Doctors Express in Washington state. Doctors Express was founded in Baltimore in 2005 by an emergency room physician and two business executives in Towson, Maryland, seeking a more efficient, affordable and personable system for urgent care patients.
Each franchise is independently owned and operated.
“The plan is to keep opening more of these around the country,” said Dr. Marilyn Gibb, medical director. “The idea is for Doctors Express to become a nationally recognized franchise, so if you saw one in a different state, you’d know what it is and what service to expect.”
The office in Kent is located at N. 180th on West Valley Highway. Doctors Express features a main office, four treatment rooms and is equipped to treat around 60 patients every day.
“Urgent care fills a void in the medical system, treating those cases, which do not require the resources and expense of a hospital emergency room,” Gibbs said. “Patients want to be treated by experienced physicians without sitting around all day in a waiting room. We believe Doctors Express is an efficient, low-cost health care solution that will improve access to quality medical care. Every aspect of our business will center on patient/customer satisfaction.”
There are two certified physicians and four medical assistants in the office. Gibbs has 25 years experience as an emergency room physician, working at an emergency room at Valley Medical Center, while Platt was an internist for 10 years.
“I wanted to come here because I believe Doctors Express has a great emphasis on compassion and service,” Platt said. “This means we are listening to our patients and taking the time to address their concerns. I think a lot of times patients feel doctors are just rushing through their times with them, but they won’t feel like that here.”
Gibbs thought this opportunity would be a great transition from her hectic schedule at the hospital.
“I love that I will have the chance to slow down and really take time with each patient,” she said. “I love being a doctor because it’s so satisfying to help others and there is a new challenge every day. You never know who might walk through the door and what help they need.”
Gibbs said the best part of having a Doctors Express is that emergency and hospital rooms won’t be as busy.
“I would say that about 70 percent of the people that walked through the emergency room at Valley Medical Center didn’t need to be there,” she said. “Their injuries or conditions could have been easily treated at doctor’s offices. Many came because they didn’t have a doctor to go to or insurance coverage.”
Doctors Express accepts most major insurance companies and treats lacerations repairs, fractures and sprains. They encourage patients with serious medical conditions such as stroke symptoms, passing out and crushing chest pain, to go to the emergency room.
Doctors Express is a collaborative effort with other doctors and offices in the area. They will take on patients who can’t see their family doctors, then encourage them to follow up with their physician.
“We don’t want to take any patients from their doctors,” Platt said. “We are simply here to fill a void for them.”
For more information, visit DoctorsExpresskentwa.com or call 425-291-3300.