In a move to provide round-the-clock care to Group Health members in the Tacoma area and to reduce costly emergency room visits, Group Health Monday is opening an expanded urgent care unit at its Tacoma Medical Center.
The expanded unit will have 19 care rooms, 12 examination rooms, four observation rooms, three cardiac care beds and a triage room. All will be open 24 hours a day.
“With a newly expanded urgent care we can provide our members with more convenient and cost-effective care round-the-clock,” said Jim Leonard, Tacoma Market Development Vice President for Group Health.
The urgent care unit currently sees some 24,000 Group Health member visits a year. The expanded unit will be able to handle twice that number.
The health care provider reconfigured its building at 209 Martin Luther King Jr. Way to accommodate the larger first-floor urgent care facility.
Group Health urged its members to use the urgent care facility for such non-life-threatening emergencies such as lacerations or severe cuts, pink eye, ear infections, broken bones and sprains and sudden abdominal pain instead of going to the emergency room.
Group Health is also expanding its capabilities in Pierce County with the opening in December of its new Puyallup Medical Center