Member Highlight: Dr. Jorge Trujillo

Dr. Jorge Trujillo M.D.
Medical Director Frontline ER Richmond Location

After completing my residency in emergency medicine in 1994 at Texas Tech Health Science Center in El Paso Texas, I returned to Houston and began my hospital based emergency medicine career. At that time Texas Tech was the only school in Texas offering training in emergency room medicine. It is amazing how much patient care and the landscape has changed since those early days of emergency room medicine.

As my career steadily progressed I as was able to ascend to become Medical Director at Memorial Hermann Medical City Houston, which I am proud to say evolved into a flagship facility. Later in my career the creation of freestanding ER was established. At first I had many reservations that they could not provide the same level of care being currently offered in a traditional hospital emergency room. Yet as time passed, I started to consider my own future in the emergency room and came to the conclusion that I might want to consider finishing out my career with a freestanding emergency room. When I decided the time was right, I moved to a freestanding emergency room affiliated with a Houston based health care system. Upon arriving I was surprised that I was able to give equivalent or better care, spending more time with patients and their families. I came to realize that the future of emergency medicine was not in the traditional hospital setting, but rather out in the community where we could treat patients faster and more efficiently while not having them wait for hours on end in the waiting room. Seeing the positive attitude of my nurses and staff helped re-energize and remind me of my love for emergency room medicine. Then when the opportunity to create my own freestanding emergency room became a reality, there was no looking back and Frontline ER was created along with three other doctors.

Launching and now operating Frontline ER has allowed me the ability to have true input in how the staff and physician are expected to interact with our patients. We have a program called The 3A’s of Frontline ER: You Are Always In Network; We Are Always Here For You; and We Are Always Open. The three “A’s” speaks to our commitment as doctors to provide the highest level of care possible with little to no wait times and immediate access to health care which is something everyone wants. Our continuous goal is to meet expectations of patients and their families when they have a medical emergency so there are no 4-6 hour waits normally experienced at a hospital emergency room.

The challenges when it comes to freestanding emergency rooms are many. The communities we service need to be educated that we are an emergency room not an urgent care clinic. There is a big difference between the two as we all know. We continuously communicate that if they can wait until an urgent care clinic opens or they can see their doctor then that may be the better option. For those people who cannot see their doctor in a timely manner or find the urgent care clinic closed will have made the right decision coming to a freestanding emergency room. Our freestanding emergency rooms, as per state mandate, are all up-to-date newer facilities with labs, pharmacy and imaging departments that have x-ray, CT scan and ultra-sound. With all these resources at our disposal, along with board trained and certified doctors and nursing staff, we step up to meet the challenges we face with our patients resulting in the best and highest level of care possible. In my nearly 25 years of working as an emergency medicine physician, I admit

this is a move in the right direction for the patients. Less wait time addressing the urgency of their symptoms and allowing more physician time with a lower cost then what a hospital emergency room can do is why freestanding emergency rooms are the way of the future.

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