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Archives for November 2017

Should I Go To Urgent Care?

The addition of our Urgent Care at Hutchinson Health has allowed us to provide a care option for those with urgent medical needs not critical enough to be treated in the Emergency Room.

Our Care That Fits program helps to determine where the best care is for your needs , when you arrive. However, most patients should receive care through their primary providers in our clinic. It’s important to understand when to make a scheduled appointment with your provider and when your medical needs are better addressed  in Urgent Care. Here are some commonly asked questions about when you should or should not go to Urgent Care.

I can’t get in to see my primary physician, so should I just ask to see an Urgent Care provider?

  • No. Urgent Care is for patients experiencing a sudden illness or injury that cannot wait, such as a sprained ankle or cut finger. If your medical needs are not urgent, call 320-234-3290 for an appointment with your primary provider. If you are unable to get an appointment with your primary provider, you can ask to see an open practice provider. Our staff will work with you to find an opening with a physician, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant that works best with your schedule. This helps ensure that patients needing urgent care can be seen quickly.

If I go to Urgent Care for something that should be scheduled with my primary physician, do I still need to see my primary physician later?

  • In many cases, yes! Urgent Care does not replace a visit to your primary care provider. It’s very important that you see your primary provider for the majority of your appointments, as they know you well and can follow-up. Our Urgent Care isn’t structured to provide ongoing care over time; care that helps to recognize health signs, tracking things like blood pressure and immunizations, and schedule appropriate screenings and follow-up care. If you see an Urgent Care provider for something that should be covered with your primary physician in a scheduled appointment, you’ll likely need another appointment anyway.

I have a lot going on with my health, can the providers in Urgent Care treat them while I’m there?

  • Urgent care is meant for your immediate needs. Sometimes what you or I may think are different problems may actually be related. The Urgent Care staff will help you prioritize your needs and get you the care that you need today. We can then help you get an appointment with your primary care provider to take care of the rest of your concerns.

I have run out of a prescription. Isn’t talking to an Urgent Care provider the fastest or easiest way to refill my prescription?

  • No. Refills of prescriptions, especially for chronic conditions is best monitored by your primary provider. Urgent Care providers are not familiar with your healthcare plan or prescriptions. The best way to refill a prescription as quickly as possible is to leave a message for your physician, OR use your Online Health Account to send a message with as much detail as you’d like, OR contact with your pharmacist who can facilitate an electronic request on your behalf to refill a medication.

I don’t have time to wait for my scheduled appointment. Isn’t Urgent Care a way to move up my appointment?

  • Urgent Care isn’t meant to accommodate time-sensitive schedules. Urgent Care provides same-day care for problems and injuries that need immediate medical attention, but are not life threatening. Urgent Care treats patients in order of severity, with the most severe conditions first. You can read more about how our triage nurse helps determine the urgency of Care That Fits.

Aren’t wait times shorter in Urgent Care? It feels like it takes less time than waiting to see my regular doctor.

  • Again, wait times in Urgent Care are not necessarily shorter for patients with medical needs that can be addressed in an appointment with their primary physician or an open practice provider. In many cases, working with our schedulers will help you find a provider with an opening. In Urgent Care, patients are seen in order of severity. If your medical need isn’t urgent, it is a much better option to see a physician in the clinic who has an opening in his/her schedule.

I really don’t want to go to the Emergency Room. Can’t Urgent Care just take care of it?

  • It can be confusing to know what the right level of care might be for you. It is why we created Care That Fits. Our triage nurses understand the resources that are available both in the ER and in Urgent Care and can help you find what will provide you the best care.

I don’t have a primary physician, or if I do, I don’t remember who it is.

  • We can help! If you don’t remember the name, give our front desk a call at 320-234-3290. If you would like to learn more about our providers, we have a complete listing along with their specialties and most of our providers have videos on our website. Ask those who know you best for their recommendation and then simply let us know your preference for designating a primary care provider in our system. That way when you call, we can quickly check his/her appointment schedule and find an opening for you.

Where you go for Care Matters

Where you go for your care matters.
See your primary care physician or a provider if you are sick, have an injury, for regular check ups, or concerns about an ongoing health problem.
Urgent Care is designed to provide care when your provider or another provider is unavailable, you are sick or have an injury and need to be seen right away.
Establishing a primary care provider is the best option for you and your family’s long term care.

Primary Care Provider Dr. Noah Retka

Pediatric Therapy Open House!

Come and visit our new Pediatric Therapy location!

Monday, January 8, 2018 from 4-6 pm

All are welcome! Register for Prizes!

1011 Hwy 15 S (Plaza 15)  Hutchinson, MN



Hutchinson Health offers comprehensive pediatric rehabilitation services. Services include physical, occupational, and speech therapy. Our goal is to help your child achieve their highest function and improve their independence.

New Pediatric Clinic Location


1011 Hwy 15 S Plaza 15
Hutchinson, MN 55350
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The Great {WINTER} Outdoors

Getting outside can feel like a lot of effort as the temps begin to drop, but there are so many great opportunities to explore our community all winter long.  In fact, winter can make the regular neighborhood route feel like a new place.  As the leaves have dropped, you might notice a few more views that trees were blocking in the summer.  If you feel a bit more adventurous, check out a favorite trail.  Fresh snow fall is perfect to use snowshoes.  Did you know snowshoes are available to rent at Hutchinson Parks and Rec for just $5 a set?  There are a variety of sizes for ages 4 and up.

Check out the Winter Activity Guide for more info on snowshoes, ice time, open gym time and other community happenings.

Speaking of community happenings, be sure to put Winterfest on your schedule for Saturday, Feb 3rd.  If you can believe it, we’ll have even more winter fun family activities to showcase in 2018 along with some old favorites like dogsled rides and outdoor games.


Get Your Flu Vaccine at Hutchinson Health

The flu vaccine is your best defense against contracting the flu.

flu-shotThe flu vaccine can be given in shot and mist form. Hutchinson Health has flu shots and mist will be available soon. It is advisable you and your family be vaccinated for the flu as soon as possible. To get your flu vaccine at Hutchinson Health, simply stop at the front desk. No appointment needed.

The seasonal flu, commonly referred to as “the flu” or “influenza”, is a respiratory illness that is contagious and caused by flu viruses. People spread the flu virus from one another, and it typically results in mild to severe illness in the person who contracts the flu virus. In some instances, the flu can lead to serious illness or even death. The flu can be a serious health concern for young children, elderly, and people with chronic health conditions, making them more susceptible.

Contact your provider if you have any specific questions or concerns about getting the vaccine.



2018’s OBOC Book Choice

Song Poet: A Memoir of My Father by Kao Kalia Yang.

5 Reasons to Have Your Baby at Hutchinson Health


1. Highly Experienced Care Team


Your care team of physicians and nurses have extensive training in prenatal care, labor and delivery, and postnatal care. Working together to provide the best healthcare and birth experience possible, Hutchinson Health has physicians specializing in Obstetrics, Family Medicine, and Pediatrics to care for you and your baby for years to come. Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetists are available at all times for epidural pain management, and our surgical team is ready if a C-section is needed.

doctor talking with patient


2. Personalized Care


The birth of your baby is an incredible moment in life. We want to make your experience as positive and personal as possible. We strongly encourage you continue building a relationship with your provider and talk with him/her about any hopes, fears, or questions you have about pregnancy and giving birth. While our ultimate goal is always a safe delivery with a healthy mom and baby, we strive to make that happen in a way that feels personal to you.


3. The Reassurance You Need


Heighten safety and reassurance helps you know your baby is receiving the best care in the first few hours, days, and weeks of life. You and your baby will use the Hugs and Kisses System, each receiving matching bracelets moments after delivery. This advanced security system allows babies to be moved within the BirthCare Center and protects them from leaving the ward, by automatically activating door locks and alerting staff. All newborns are sent home with the HALO SleepSack®, a safer, easier way to swaddle and help your baby sleep safely from the start.

newborn in cart


4. Modern, Comfortable Suites


Privacy, comfort, and home-like décor provide moms and their loved ones the calm and encouraging environment needed throughout labor and delivery. Jetted whirlpool tubs, aromatherapy, room-service style dining, and complimentary Internet access are part of our birth suites.

birthcare suite



5. Education and Support


Our classes help prepare you for childbirth and breastfeeding, and our care staff and certified lactation consultants will help you with your transition from pregnancy to new mom. Hutchinson Health offers lactation services for patients immediately following delivery, as well as mothers who have returned home with their newborns to help make breastfeeding a success. Your support continues as your family provider and/or pediatrician will follow up with you for post-delivery check-ups and ongoing wellness appointments.

Prepared Childbirth Class

Be Smart About Antibiotics

World Antibiotic Awareness Week November 13-19, 2017.
This years theme is to always seek advice from a health care, professional provider before taking antibiotics. That way you won’t be taking them unnecessarily and potentially causing resistance. Antibiotics are a resource only to be used when it is appropriate.
Antibiotic resistance occurs naturally but misuse accelerates the process. Be smart about antibiotics.

CDC Get Smart Viruses or Bacteria Chart showing when antibiotics are needed

Congratulations Dr. Erin Knudtson

Congratulations to Dr. Erin Knudtson, who was awarded the “Specialty Preceptor Achievement Award” for her work in Pediatrics with RPAP students at Hutchinson Health  in Hutchinson, MN. The student who nominated her for this award said “I will never forget the kindness and empathy she showed her patients. She is the physician I aspire to be.” Thank you to Dr. Knudtson, and the many physicians who work with our students each year!

Dr. Erin Knudtson standing next to two men holding the “Specialty Preceptor Achievement Award”

Recognizing Our Team of Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants

Often referred to as Advanced Practice Providers, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants are highly trained and qualified health care professionals. They play a vital role in the breadth of provider options available at Hutchinson Health and serve as an excellent choice for individuals and families needing preventative and acute care.

Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants are able to diagnose and treat most common conditions and have been certified to perform many of the same tasks as a physician. At Hutchinson Health, Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants coordinate heavily with Physicians, who also work closely with Specialty Providers to provide a team-based approach to care.

Recognizing Our Team of Nurse Practitioners and Physician Assistants