Darla and Marc Cleary | Northfield Hospital & Clinics

Darla and Marc Cleary

Darla and Marc Cleary

Darla and Marc Cleary are familiar with Urgent Care. Very familiar.   

Darla and Marc’s family made a half-dozen trips to the doctor over six weeks. From McKenzie’s sprained ankle to Liam’s persistent cough, they rely on the Lakeville Clinic and Urgent Care for quick care for their kids. 

“We kind of just live there right now,” Darla laughs. “They all know us.” 

It started when COVID spread through the family. The team at Urgent Care helped care for their lingering long-lasting symptoms. 

Then an injury: Six-year-old McKenzie sprained her ankle on a trampoline . . . prompting a trip to the Emergency Department. “We chose Northfield Hospital because she’s been seen there before,” and the drive from their Elko New Market home is the same distance to Northfield as it is to Burnsville. The ED team x-rayed McKenzie’s ankle and crafted a cast for her petite foot (too small for standard-size cast or brace). “They were so great with her.” 

Darla and Marc followed up with McKenzie’s pediatrician Kelly Meyer, DO in the Lakeville Clinic. “Dr. Meyer is fantastic,” Darla says. “She distracted McKenzie by talking about ice skating and other things that she likes, and got McKenzie to take a few steps.” Dr. Meyer confirmed a sprain (not broken), and tailored McKenzie’s care appropriately. 

Then, more illness: Four-year-old Liam couldn’t shake his cough, and “seemed to pick up every virus that came his way,” Darla says. Multiple visits to Urgent Care and to Dr. Meyer helped home in on a diagnosis and treatment for Liam. (Darla recorded episodes of Liam coughing at home to help diagnose it.) 

Then – spoiler alert – McKenzie got sick too. Back to Urgent Care, again. 

Darla expected a long wait; it was right after school, and the end of the workday. But “we were being seen within five minutes, and done in 30 minutes,” she says. “Urgent Care is so fast, and they’re really good.” 

Darla likes the continuity of care, too: Nurse Practitioner Jane Carlson, CNP, APRN has seen both kids multiple times. That’s not always common with walk-in care.  

“She’s been just wonderful,” Darla says. “She listens, and she treats you like a person. She makes it a calming experience for the kids. 

“Jane says, ‘If you see any change in the next 24 hours, call me. We’ll do everything we can,’” Darla recalls. “The Urgent Care team is really open to trying different things to help the kids.” 

Urgent Care makes pandemic precautions easy for walk-in care, too: If your child has a cough or respiratory symptom, you call from the parking lot and are checked in over the phone. Then when it’s time for your child to be seen, you come right into the clinic and straight through to the exam room. “We keep some toys and games to play in the car to keep them busy until it’s our turn,” Darla adds. 

“Urgent Care in Lakeville is our first choice. We’ve had really great experiences there,” Darla says. “They’re very receptive to listening, and want to do all that they can for us.” 

Meanwhile, Darla gets prenatal care in at the Women’s Health Center adjacent to Northfield Hospital – an easy drive from Elko New Market for multiple appointments.  

Darla’s advice for other parents? “Advocate for your kids. If you’re feeling mom-tuition about something, know that they will listen to you. The providers have all been very helpful, and extremely receptive to our concerns. They treat you like a person, not like a textbook.” 

No matter how often you’re there. 

Learn more: Urgent Care, Emergency Department, Lakeville Clinic