The Increase in the Number of Urgent Care Centers in North Florida and the Nation

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Urgent care centers are on the rise in North Florida and across the nation. These centers promise convenience and consumer-friendly pricing and are popping up everywhere along highways and stripmalls. According to the Urgent Care Association of America, the number of urgent care centers is estimated to have increased by 8% since 2008 despite the recession. However the UCAA predicts its estimation may be low because what defines “urgent care” across the nation is not so clear.
In Jacksonville, Florida, these urgent care centers are very popular. For example, within a 50-mile radius of downtown Jacksonville, at least 32 clinics provide walk-ins with timely care. A dozen of these North Florida clinics belong to the chain Solantic. These clinics offer care during regular doctors’ hours as well as nights and weekends. Michael Critzer, director of operations of Physians Medical, another upcoming urgent care center in North Florida, accredits the popularity of these new facilities to the fact that nowadays people need instant gratification, nobody likes to wait.
Emergency rooms are the main competitors of urgent care centers. However, the urgent care centers charge far less than the ERs. Some worry about the quality of care given by the centers. However, urgent care centers are so new that there has not been enough time to adequately study and compare the quality of care given to that provided at an emergency room. If you would like to read more on this topic please see Urgent Care Centers on the rise in North Florida.

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