University of Florida Health leaders broke ground in December on a new full-service, freestanding emergency room in a heavily populated area southwest of Gainesville, providing patients with access to fast, high-quality emergency care close to home.
Located on Southwest Archer Road near Tower Road, west of Interstate 75, the new UF Health Shands Emergency Center – Kanapaha is expected to open in October 2016. The planned 10,881 square-foot emergency center will feature 10 exam rooms, one room dedicated to trauma care and the full complement of diagnostic radiology and laboratory services needed, including CT scans. The center will be UF Health’s second freestanding emergency facility in Gainesville. In 2013, UF Health opened UF Health Shands Emergency Center – Springhill in northwest Gainesville.
“We wanted to address the needs of our growing community, and to that end we built a freestanding emergency center at Springhill that provides accessible, high-quality emergency care where people work and live. With the new center in southwest Gainesville, we continue to make good on our commitment to patients in the region,” said Ed Jimenez, UF Health Shands CEO. “Our emergency medicine teams are committed to providing high-quality, efficient care, and we are excited to bring this care closer to residents in Southwest Gainesville and Archer.”
UF Health leaders chose the new center’s location because a large number of patients coming to both the Springhill and UF Health Shands Hospital emergency care sites live in southwest Alachua County. The new center will give area residents convenient, 24-hour access to the full range of UF Health.
“Even though we think of this facility as truly a freestanding emergency center, there is a seamless connection to all of the subspecialty expertise available at UF Health. This is a powerful feature of our care delivery strategy and offers significant advantages over typical freestanding emergency department facilities,” said J. Adrian Tyndall, M.D., chairman of the UF College of Medicine department of emergency medicine and chief of emergency health services at UF Health.
“If there is a need for consultation or collaborative decision-making, such as in stroke care, we will have experts immediately available with immediate access to electronic health records, imaging and other systems that will be integrated between our facilities,” Tyndall adds.
The freestanding center will receive 911 patients and, if needed, also offer a place for physicians to stabilize trauma patients before sending them to the Level 1 trauma center at UF Health Shands Hospital.
Since opening in 2013, the UF Health Shands Emergency Center – Springhill has received more than 40,000 patient visits.
“We opened that two years ago, and it has gotten excellent reviews from customers, has short wait times, and a high level of care,” said Brad Pollitt, vice president of facilities for UF Health Shands. “It’s out of this demand that we are launching this project.”
Construction is scheduled to be complete late next summer and a tentative grand opening is scheduled for October 2016, Pollitt said.
“Overall, our goal is to increase access and provide a more innovative way of offering care to the community,” Tyndall said. “We are taking the same care we provide in the hospital setting and offering it in areas more accessible to patients.”