CHUBBUCK — The young patients at Just 4 Kids Urgent Care get to drive a toy Jeep to the X-ray room when they need to be examined for a possible broken bone.
They’re offered virtual reality goggles to divert their attention when they get stitches, and they can always count on a sucker or a popsicle to sweeten the experience of a medical visit.
The eight patient exam rooms have wildlife and outdoorsy themes — one is wallpapered with Old Faithful and other Yellowstone National Park scenes, and another has penguins and other images from the Arctic, for example.
Just 4 Kids, located in the former Black Bear Diner building at 190 Bullock St., opened for business on Sept. 27, making it the first pediatric urgent care in Southeast Idaho. The only other pediatric urgent care in all of Eastern Idaho is the Just 4 Kids location that opened three years ago in Idaho Falls.
The medical business is scheduled to celebrate its ceremonial ribbon-cutting at 5:15 p.m. Tuesday.
Area kids are already finding that getting sick has never been so enjoyable.
“As crazy as that sounds, it’s actually really fun because we have people who leave reviews who say their kid thinks it’s fun to come to the doctor right now,” said Emily Chantry, the business’s marketing director. “Why not have a really good experience? They’re already sick. They’re already not having a great day.”
Just 4 Kids also accepts only walk-in patients and is open from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days per week. Chantry believes the business provides a good option for parents whose children get sick or injured late on a weekend.
Common services include COVID-19 tests, X-rays, flu shots, telemedicine visits, prescription medication dispensing, an onsite laboratory, texting with pediatric nurses and providers and treatments for colds, RSV, strep throat and sports injuries. They accept most major insurances.
“We aren’t a primary care provider. We don’t have set patients and we don’t do appointments,” Chantry said.
Chantry said pediatric urgent cares are a relatively new concept.
“There are starting to be more of them but there’s not a lot of them,” Chantry said. “There aren’t many in the country but we love what we do. ... We feel like kids need and deserve specialized care.”
The clinic has nearly 20 staff members. Dr. Aaron Gardner, a pediatrician who is one of the owners, splits time between the Pocatello and Idaho Falls clinics, working mostly out of Pocatello. The Pocatello clinic is seeking an additional pediatrician. The clinic also has pediatric providers, pediatric radiologist technicians, pediatric registered nurses and office staff who are all good with children.
The staff members are locals who have trained at the Idaho Falls clinic, Chantry said.
Chantry said the clinic anticipates drawing patients from surrounding communities with limited treatment options, such as Blackfoot, American Falls and McCammon.
Chantry said the building underwent a major renovation that included adding interior walls, exterior work and significant landscaping to convert it from a diner to a clinic. The clinic donated two walk-in freezers from the restaurant to a local community food basket, she said.