Hmong owned urgent care clinic


Quik Urgent Care Clinic

The Twin Cities hospital emergency rooms are sometimes filled to capacity with patients that do not exhibit a medical condition that threatens their life, limb or eyesight or is a medical, maternity or psychiatric condition that requires immediate attention. This presents a problem for emergency room attendants with limited time, space and resources who see patients that could otherwise take their less serious medical complaints to an urgent care clinic.

It will cost a lot more to take a cold or an ear infection to the ER, than it would to go to an urgent care center. Some people utilize the emergency room because they are underinsured and wait until a health condition has reached a chronic stage. Others have not identified an after-hours resource that handles all types of health conditions.

Phua Xiong, M.D. and May Mua PA-C have partnered in establishing “Quik Urgent Care Clinic,” the first Asian American-privately owned and operated urgent care facility at 1239 Payne Avenue, Suite 201, St Paul. It is located in the same building as Dr. Xiong’s private practice in the St. Paul Family Medical Center.

“This is a clinic where you don’t have to wait for a long time. It’s somewhere between the ER (emergency room) and the family doctor,” said Dr. Xiong, whose practice identifies with patients looking for culturally competency in compassionate, friendly, courteous, quality and family oriented care.

Urgent care services offer attention for conditions that could worsen into something very serious if not treated within 24-hours, but still would not present an immediate danger to life or limb. An urgent care condition could be a sprained ankle or wrist, while a broken bone would qualify as an emergency room concern. An urgent care complaint is a sore throat or a rising temperature, while impaired breathing or a dangerously high temperature would require emergency care.

“Urgent care is specifically a service that is geared toward acute visits,” said Xiong. “By acute, I mean something that is serious enough not to wait until tomorrow to see the doctor, or if you can’t get an office appointment this week.

“Its not meant to function as a primary care clinic, and its not set up to handle somebody who has a heart attack or a stroke or some other major life threatening issue,” she added.

May Mua is a Certified Physicians Assistant (PA-C) and is present at Quik Urgent Care Clinic most of the time. She is capable of providing most all of the duties and services of the clinic under the supervision of Dr. Xiong.

A physicians assistant will spend more time with the patient going over the prevention and health education information regarding their health than can the medical doctor. Mua says that it is common for patients, and the elderly especially, to not completely understand the concept of curtailing the long-term impact chronic illnesses such as high blood pressure and diabetes. They often see disease as something that simply be cured in the short term with medication or treatment and she works extensively with patients regarding their individual health conditions.

A physicians assistant is also qualified to do much of the care that a doctor can, and May Mua has done it all, from suturing lacerations or removing them, EKG’s, urine analysis for disease detection, pregnancy tests, STD screening, flu shots, even an intravenous (IV) hydration, and all manners of eyes, ears, nose and throat medicine.

“If you are in active labor or displaying symptoms of a stroke or heart attack, then you should go to the emergency room,” said Mua. “If you have a fever, a minor infection, not able to sleep through the night, or you have a baby with a fever or is irritable, then you should come here.”

They are not set-up for x-rays on-site and though they can do a pregnancy test, a rape victim should go to the emergency room where they have the capacity to collect specimens for a criminal investigation and the trauma services for the victim. Also, Quik Urgent Care Clinic does not have a psychologist or psychiatrist on staff, and is not currently set-up to provide mental or behavioral health on site.

Quik Urgent Care Clinic does not offer patient referrals because they are not the primary caregiver. They will recommend patients to see a specialist regarding a complaint when necessary. Patients should notify their regular physician when they used urgent care or the emergency room.

Quik Urgent Care Clinic accepts most insurances and they emphasize that they exist to serve the entire community and not only the Hmong. They urge mainstream and other new American communities to come in and bring an interpreter if possible.

“We saw this was a need for the Hmong community, because there is really no urgent care that is tailored to the Hmong in the Twin Cities and for any minority groups,” said Mua.

May Mua is originally from California and graduated from the Augsburg College Physicians Assistant program in Minneapolis. The program requires a master’s degree and PA certification. She works during the day at the Center for International Health at Regions Hospital.

May Mua and her husband, Pastor Tchanong Hurh, also see to the spiritual needs of about 100 families at House of God Trinity Christian Church located at the Dayton Avenue Presbyterian in St. Paul. He is also from California and earned a Theology degree from Fresno Pacific University. They have three teenage children.

Phua Xiong, M.D. came to American from Laos with her family in 1976, eventually settling in Pennsylvania. She graduated from Philadelphia Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration High School with honors in 1987. She received her undergraduate degree from Haverford College Pennsylvania and then her Medical Doctorate from the University of Minnesota Medical School in 1996. She received the U of M’s Resident of the Year Award and then began practicing medicine at Model Cities Health Center. She opened the first St. Paul Family Medical Center on University Avenue, before moving it to the East Side.

Dr. Xiong is married to Mr. Blong Thao, a Language English Proficiency (LEP) teacher at Lucy Laney-Craft School in Minneapolis. They have five children together.

Quik Urgent Care Clinic hours are 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, and 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon on Sunday. Call 651-771-4700 during these hours, or leave a message and they will return the call.