University of Iowa opens a new urgent care facility to increase community access

he University of Iowa opened another urgent care facility on Jan. 14 in Coralville to give better access to North Liberty and Coralville residents.


Emily Wangen

The University of Iowa Health Care urgent care Coralville location is seen on Tuesday, Jan. 21, 2020. The building is located at 2591 Holiday Road.

Riley Davis, News Reporter

The University of Iowa opened a new urgent care facility just one year after the original facility in order to expand access to North Liberty and Coralville residents.

“The first urgent care clinic opened initially in 2018,” UI Urgent Care Medical Director Dr. Nathan Shaw said. “We definitely planned the opening of our first location on Scott Boulevard to expand our reach and handle the growth of patient volume, and in terms of continuing to expand the services we felt that opening another location was necessary.”

The new urgent care facility will handle the same general services as the Scott Boulevard location.

Shaw said that there’s an ever-growing need for more facilities and clinics in the area for common conditions, such as broken bones or dehydration. The new location provides this by not only being geographically convenient for patients but also by expanding their ability to access medical and urgent care services that weren’t available in their area previously, he said.

“It definitely seems like there continues to be an access issue, we just have a lot of patients who need medical care [and often can’t get it],” Shaw said. “Ultimately I think having to just care for a great volume of patients will help some with that access issue.”

Related: UIHC urgent care center provides an increase in accessiblity

Another reason, besides proximity, that the Holiday Road location was chosen was the university’s prior ownership of the land and the building that currently houses the new facility.

The building, which had previously been the Pediatric Associates Clinic, was completely renovated and reconfigured to house the Urgent Care Clinic and Occupational Health, Shaw said. The renovation included the creation of eight exam rooms, a provider office, radiology spaces, a cardiac treatment room, DOT testing rooms, a lab, a telecommunication room, and other support spaces.

The project cost a total of $1,980,000 and was broken down into four main budget categories:

  • Planning, Design & Management ($189,800)
  • Construction ($755,510)
  • Furniture & Equipment ($960,854)
  • Contingency ($73,836)

Dr. Shaw said that he would consider the facility a success if in the future it can care for all the patients who are appropriate for their level of care that they can, keep them from having to go to the emergency room, and reduce their overall medical expenses.

Shaw’s overall expectations for the new facility, given its location, is that it won’t take long to reach numbers similar to what the Scott Boulevard location had in the past year and a half.

“As the medical director of urgent care, I envision ongoing growth and ongoing need for urgent care services in the future,” he said. “So, I can’t really say what the future holds, but I expect that there’s going to be an ongoing need for more urgent care services within the community.”