American Family Care, a 34-year-old Birmingham, Alabama, company that expects to have more than 200 clinics in 26 states by year’s end, is opening its first urgent care center on Long Island, with plans afoot to open five more within three years.
The 4,000-square-foot AFC Urgent Care center on Hempstead Turnpike in East Meadow is staging its grand opening Thursday.
Two Hofstra University graduates, Lou Dionisio, 58, and Justin Schwartz, 38, are AFC’s franchisees for Long Island and managing partners of the center, which has seven exam rooms, two triage rooms, a procedure room and digital X-ray services.
Dionisio said Thursday that he and Schwartz already have earmarked locations in Oceanside and Commack, with the other three locations to be determined.
Urgent care centers, which allow patients to walk in and be treated for illnesses and injuries without waiting for an appointment, are sprouting up on Long Island. The Urgent Care Association of America, an industry trade group, estimates there are more than 100 in Nassau and Suffolk counties.
Among the entrants in the Long Island market are Atlanta-based GoHealth Urgent Care, Lake Success-based ProHealth Urgent Care and Manhattan-based CityMD.
Dionisio put the cost of opening the East Meadow center at between $1 million and $1.5 million and said that after the five additional franchises are in place, he and Schwartz could tap capital from an investment group to “roll it out a little faster.”
AFC is opening urgent care centers nationwide at a rate of one a week, he said, and projections call for the number of urgent care centers from all providers to more than double from the current 9,000 to 20,000 in the next five years.
“There are more urgent care centers in America than Burger Kings,” he said.
The East Meadow center is staging a community event on Saturday including face painting, prizes and an appearance by Herb Williams, former head coach of the New York Knicks and current assistant coach of the New York Liberty.