Pursuing Her Passion Katie Kuehner, DO, Urgent Care Medical Director
November 22, 2021
As a child, Katie Kuehner, D.O., was fascinated by medicine. Her dad was a pharmaceutical representative and frequently chatted with her about his work and the world of medicine in general. For Dr. Kuehner, the prospect of doing something focused on helping people heal was intriguing.
“It was a natural fit for me,” says Dr. Kuehner, who today is the Medical Director of the Urgent Care at Exemplar Care. “Knowing that I am going to make a difference in the life of patients is exciting to me.”
Dr. Kuehner is a Central Iowa native. She grew up in Boone, went to Iowa State, and completed medical school at Des Moines University before completing her residency in Las Vegas. Prior to coming to Exemplar Care, she practiced Emergency Medicine for 11 years.
She says Exemplar Care is a perfect fit for her.
“I’ve known Dr. Jon Van Der Veer for a long time. I knew what he was doing on the Direct Primary Care side, and that approach to patient care appealed to me,” Dr. Kuehner says. “Our model of care ensures we have a true impact in the lives of our patients. With access to DPC, Urgent Care, and our own in-house case management team, we can more easily meet patients where they are and manage the continuity of their care. It is a seamless model for delivering and receiving care.”
Serving as Medical Director of Exemplar Care’s 24/7 Urgent Care has provided Dr. Kuehner an opportunity to serve patients in a different way than her most recent practice.
“My work in Emergency Medicine has led to me developing a passion for helping to keep people out of the ER,” she says. “People need increased access to primary care, urgent care, and care outside of the standard 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. clinic hours. For many of those in need of care, the ER isn’t an appropriate setting. Having our Urgent Care available 24/7 ensures they get the right level of care, right when they need it.”
“I’m ignited everyday with the feeling that I’m going to help someone,” Dr. Kuehner continues. “Especially when it comes to Urgent Care. Our team is helping patients avoid an often stressful and expensive trip to the ER. It is important to have Exemplar Care here to serve our patients and the community.”
An Ounce of Prevention
If you’re looking for ways to avoid Urgent Care altogether, Dr. Kuehner says establishing a relationship with a primary care provider is a must.
“It is very important to have a primary care provider you trust,” Dr. Kuehner says. “You want someone who is going to take the time to get to know you and what is going on with your health. That kind of relationship means having a primary care provider who will help you see red flags as soon as they pop up so interventions can be early, which is when most interventions are the most effective.”
Dr. Kuehner also believes there are three things we can all do to promote better health.
- Enjoy everything in moderation.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Get plenty of sleep.
“An ounce of prevention, as they say, is worth a pound of cure,” Dr. Kuehner says. “Being proactive makes a world of difference.”