Express Care clinic reopens after renovations

Published 8:18 pm Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Space repurposed to include 2 patient exam rooms


Mayo Clinic Health System in Albert Lea’s Express Care clinic reopened Monday after about two months of renovations.

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The clinic, which is housed inside Hy-Vee, now includes two full exam rooms, a waiting room, a bathroom and lab space, along with stations for both a provider and a nurse.

It previously had only one exam room and a waiting room, and patients utilized the bathroom in the grocery store.

Melissa Skime, a physician assistant who has worked at Express Care in Albert Lea and Austin for 10 years, said the space has been repurposed more efficiently.

Skime said with the changes, there will now be both a nurse and either a nurse practitioner or physician assistant working when patients come in. Because some of the services offered at the clinic can be provided by a nurse, this will help with patient load and help provide care in an efficient manner.

Skime said the upgraded features will help patients feel like they are in a state-of-the-art clinic. It will also help more of the low-acuity patients be seen at Express Care level and free up providers that provide higher levels of care to the patients who need that most.

Along with the renovations, the clinic recently expanded its list of services it will provide.

That list includes everything from bladder infections, ear pain, minor burns, minor skin infections, pink eye, strep tests and sports exams.

Skime said some of the new services that can be provided include vaccinations for Hepatitis A and B and meningitis, lice treatment, acne treatment, vaginal yeast infection treatment and screening for tuberculosis.

The clinic will continue to provide sports physicals for students in both Minnesota and Iowa.

She said a big benefit of Express Care is that it is connected to the rest of the Mayo Clinic Health System network, and test results and notes from the health care team there are able to be accessed by a person’s primary provider or others through the health system.

Skime estimated the Express Care clinic first started in Albert Lea about 13 or 14 years ago out of Northbridge Mall, where it was for a few years before moving to Hy-Vee. This is the second time for the space to be renovated, the first was an expansion.

“This is the next step in the growth of this clinic,” she said.

There will be a public open house at the clinic from 10 a.m. to noon Dec. 11. Refreshments will be served.

Express Care is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.