While Jupiter Medical Center plots its expansion to downtown West Palm Beach, the medical complex is opening up another urgent care center in northern Palm Beach County — this time in Palm Beach Gardens.
Jupiter Medical Chief Executive John Couris said an urgent care center is in the works for 3250 PGA Boulevard, across from The Gardens Mall. The 96,920-square-foot building was sold last year to an affiliate of Stiles, a South Florida-based real estate developer.
This project marks the third separate urgent care center in north county for Jupiter Medical Center, which is based at 1210 S. Old Dixie Highway
Jupiter Medical already has two standalone urgent care centers in Jupiter: One is at 1335 W. Indiantown Road and the other is at 5430 Military Trail in the Abacoa Shopping Center.
Couris said it’s likely Jupiter Medical will expand to western Palm Beach County, possibly Wellington, through the opening of an urgent care center and a physicians’ practice group, too.
Jupiter’s expansion to Palm Beach Gardens comes as the non-profit plans an urgent care facility as well as medical offices with Mount Sinai Hospital of New York. The two hospital companies are taking 15,000 square feet in the ground floor space of the Bank of America Centre at 625 N. Flagler Drive. Plans are to rename the building the Jupiter Medical Center Mount Sinai New York Plaza.
The center will offer urgent care and physician services affiliated with Mount Sinai, a respected center of clinical trials and research and a national leader in cardiac care.
It’s possible some medical services will compete with nearby Good Samaritan Medical Center, which is located up the street at 1309 N. Flagler Drive. But the Jupiter Medical/Mount Sinai complex is not a hospital, officials at both health companies said, and it will not have either an emergency room or hospital beds.
Urgent care is a hot trend in the health field, and hospitals are opening up offices for minor emergency visits throughout the county in a bid to compete with independently-owned urgent care centers.
But urgent care centers owned by hospitals raise concerns that patients may be directed to that hospital if in-patient care is required, even if the hospital is not located close to the urgent care centers.
Couris sought to allay those concerns about Jupiter Medical’s new West Palm Beach location, which should open in the next six months.
Couris said if any patient comes into Jupiter Medical’s urgent care centers and is diagnosed with a condition that requires immediate hospitalization, that patient will be directed to the nearest hospital — and not necessarily Jupiter Medical, if it’s not the closest facility.
For example, if a patient visited the West Palm Beach facility and, say, tests showed alarming heart symptoms, “they will go to the nearest hospital,” even if it’s Good Sam, Couris said.
“We will always do the right thing by the patient,” Couris said. “You’ll go to the closest facility. Period.”