If you need a doctor but prefer to avoid the full-blown emergency room
experience, an urgent care clinic can probably check you in today.
The opening of Shannon Urgent Care West at Sherwood Way and Sunset Drive
offers same-day health care options within minutes of any location in
San Angelo, ready to evaluate and treat conditions that are not
People streamed across the clinic’s shining floors Thursday to tour the
freshly built facility during its open house. The 6,500 square foot
space is outfitted with nine exam rooms, a procedure room, casting room
and on-location diagnostic capabilities including X-ray, EKG and
laboratory services. It officially opens Monday.
Shannon’s third urgent care location is in the middle of the west end
shopping district, close to the mall, big box stores and strip retail
centers. It’s also near fast-growing residential areas and easily
accessed from rural traffic southwest of town.
“This is two blocks from home,” said visitor Randy Jones. “This is gonna be my urgent care home.”
Proximity provides one element of convenience, but having an additional
urgent care center in town also shortens the wait time at all of them.
An app is available for checking wait times.
“You can download ‘Shannon health’ for free and click on urgent care
center wait times,” said Lyndy Stone, marketing director at Shannon
Medical Center. “You can compare all three locations and go to the one
that is the shortest.”
Thursday evening’s wait times showed up as 20 minutes and 30 minutes for
the Shannon’s existing urgent care centers. But it’s often been a
longer wait to be seen.
“When we had the (worst of the) flu, wait times took longer and went up
to over 500 minutes,” said Gary Gibian, Shannon clinic administrative
director. “It was horrible.”
Urgent care has become a preferred delivery of same-day medical
services, with Shannon opening one clinic in 2012 and another in 2014 to
meet the increasing demand of a growing region.
The American Academy of Urgent Care Medicine defines urgent care as
“medically necessary services which are required for an illness or
injury that would not result in further disability or death if not
treated immediately, but require professional attention and have the
potential to develop such a threat if treatment is delayed longer than
The AAUCM website referenced a cost study by the Annals of Internal
Medicine that said urgent care visits range $70 to $125 – substantially
less than the ER.
“Our urgent care clinics help to keep people out of the ER and not paying the higher prices,” Gibian said.\
The new clinic staffs more than 20 people and was seeking another physician for evening hours.
Medical providers include Dr. Thomas Bender, Dr. Cristina Blejan and physicians assistant Zachary O’Neal.
The clinic will be open seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.
In a life-threatening situation, people should call 911 or go to a hospital emergency department.
For more information about call-ahead service and wait times, visitshannonhealth.com.
A map with hours and contact information for urgent care and walk-in
clinics can be found at
BY: Denise Morris
Search for Urgent Care centers near your zip code.