Cathie Anderson

Cathie Anderson: El Dorado Hills’ MDSTAT acquires Fair Oaks urgent-care practice

MDSTAT Urgent Care is acquiring The Doctors Center in Fair Oaks and will begin running the operation October 1, MDSTAT president Jon Moness told me Monday.

Moness was a primary-care doctor with a large medical group in 2008 when he got the idea to launch an urgent-care business in El Dorado Hills, and he teamed two other physicians, Wali Danesh and Parween Moness, to get it off the ground.

“It was very frustrating to me that, at some point, I had a patient with an ear ache or coughing or fever calling to make an appointment, and I was not able to accommodate them for one week,” Moness said. “I said, ‘We’ve got to get something that really makes sense. The patient should be able to walk in to a clinic and get X-rays and labs and pharmacy. They’re in; they’re out.’”

With the addition of the Fair Oaks practice at 4948 San Juan Ave., MDSTAT will have more than 70 employees at six urgent-care clinics and one primary-care facility around the region. Moness expects to add two more clinics before the year is out.

The number of urgent-care facilities are expanding rapidly across the nation, but unlike MDSTAT, it is venture capitalists, not doctors, who are leading the charge. A recent New York Times article noted that investment firms have sunk $2.3 billion into urgent-care facilities around the nation since 2008. They see a profitable opportunity because, unlike emergency rooms, urgent care clinics are not obligated to treat uninsured patients.

Moness told me that he frequently fields calls private-equity investors, but he doesn’t want to sell. His MDSTAT facilities offer a medical membership for people without insurance or with high-deductible insurance. Individuals pay $69 a month; couples, $99; and families, $129. Then, they pay $10 for each subsequent treatment – broken limbs, preventive care and more.