Clinic facilities

Purgatory Resort Medical Clinic Opening Mid-December – The Durango Herald

Durango Urgent Care will fill the void left after Centura Health closed in April

Durango Urgent Care will open and staff a new emergency care department at Purgatory Resort beginning December 12. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald File)

Durango Urgent Care will open and staff a new emergency department at Purgatory Resort beginning December 12. Talks to open a new emergency department have been underway since Centura Health closed its emergency care at the resort at the end of last ski season.

Centura reportedly closed due to funding issues.

“They just didn’t have the volume they needed to keep funding it,” said Scott Sholes, EMS chief for the Durango Fire Protection District. “They calculated the numbers and decided to end this service. And once that happened, it opened the door for all the other interested parties who wanted to try to create emergency care there.

A sign on the door to Mercy Hospital Urgent Care at Purgatory Resort in September. (Jerry McBride/Durango Herald file)

Talks between Mercy Hospital administration and Durango Urgent Care to open a new urgent care center at the same location began shortly after the closure.

“And Durango Urgent Care made the most sense because they already have a site (in Durango), and the owner has a long-standing connection there to Purgatory,” Sholes said. “He’s a former ski patroller.”

A three-party agreement has been signed between Purgatory Resort, owner of the property, Centura Health, owner of the building, and Durango Urgent Care, which will contract services.

Emergency care will have a doctor or medical assistant, nurse, lab and x-ray technician and front desk person.

“We’re really excited about this because it’s as far as we can get medical care in our district,” Sholes said. “Having such a high standard of medical care to help stabilize people, to help reduce the number of ambulance calls coming from the ski resort, is really helpful because it allows our units to remain available for emergencies. more serious.”

Because the district’s northernmost Station 15 is sparsely staffed, transporting someone from purgatory to Durango affects the level of service available in that area for several hours, Sholes said.

“So it’s exceptional in terms of maintaining that level of service and maybe even improving to some degree,” he said.

Residents of Silverton will also be able to breathe a sigh of relief knowing that there is once again urgent care closer than Durango.

“That was always one of our concerns with this loss,” Sholes said. “And theirs too.”

Durango Urgent Care CEO Bryan Vincent said the Purgatory facility will be a full-service urgent care facility open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily.

Although Durango Urgent Care funds all operating costs, Vincent isn’t worried about running into the same problem that led to Centura Health’s closure.

“We’re just going to reach out to the community in this area and be there,” he said. “I think our model is a bit different from the hospital. But in the past, there was volume up there, and we’re just going to try to do that.

gjaros@durangoherald.com