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My Perspective: How OrthoCarolina Orthopedic Urgent Care Clinics take care of you on your schedule

My Perspective: How OrthoCarolina Orthopedic Urgent Care Clinics take care of you on your schedule

By Timothy Pysell, DrHA, MMSc., PA-C, DFAAPA

Director of Physician Assistants, OrthoCarolina

It’s probably happened to you or someone in your family -- you experienced an injury after your doctor’s office closed, or on the weekend. Often, the choices you have are not great.  You could wait and call you doctor the next day or on Monday.  You could go to the nearby urgent care and then, most likely, be referred to your family doctor anyway.  You could go to the emergency room, where the national average wait time before you see a clinician or nurse is an hour1 and overcrowding is a national problem.

Not anymore, if you live in metro Charlotte.  OrthoCarolina, one of the nation’s leading orthopedic surgery groups, offers a better alternative.  At an Orthopedic Urgent Care Clinic (OUC), patients are welcome after hours and on weekends.2

As the Director of Physician Assistants for OrthoCarolina, I am especially proud that often your care in an OUC will be provided by a physician assistant (PA).  Physician assistants are medical professionals who work as part of a team with a physician.  A PA is a graduate of an accredited PA school and is nationally certified and state-licensed to practice medicine under the supervision of a physician.  All PAs at OrthoCarolina are nationally certified and must retake a national re-certification examination every six years. Our PAs average over 11 years of experience in orthopedic surgery and often take care of patients with orthopedic problems referred to OrthoCarolina by physicians, nurse practitioners, and other physician assistants. 

If you go to the ER, you will most likely be told to follow up with your family doctor. If you go to your family doctor, you may eventually be referred to an orthopedist.  If you choose an OUC, most often you will be seeing the same providers who care for patients in our sub-specialty and general orthopedic surgery offices and you can get connected directly to the OrthoCarolina appointment system if you need a follow-up appointment.  And there will be no transferring medical records, no requesting X-rays or CT scans; all of your medical records from OrthoCarolina’s OUCs are part of the same permanent electronic medical record system used in all of our offices and will be at your provider’s fingertips when you follow up in one of our offices.

OrthoCarolina is dedicated to clinical quality and patient care, one patient at a time. It is my honor to lead our PA team because I am proud of the work they do and know that we offer the best in care. The next time you have a problem with a muscle, bone, or joint after hours, think OrthoCarolina’s OUC.  For more information on our Urgent Care facilities, visit us here.

  1. National average wait time to see a health care provider according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  2. Check the hours of operation online at


Great article plus I was happy to see the pictures of all involved! It is great for Charlotte and surrounding area. Much success to all! we are counting on you!
- Rita Ahlers
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