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Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health will open an urgent care center in November at what is currently an Elizabethtown outpatient office, it announced this week.

In addition to the standard urgent care available at all the system’s centers, the  one at 418 Cloverleaf Road — to be identified as Norlanco — will offer IV fluid for dehydration, treatment rooms where patients can be monitored for several hours, concussion screening,  increased capabilities for asthma treatment, and more diagnostics for stomach or leg pain or shortness of breath.

Of the system’s existing urgent cares, only the sixth and most recent — Lititz, opened last fall — has similar extra services. The others are at Rohrerstown Road, Ephrata, Parkesburg, Lebanon and downtown Lancaster. 

The Elizabethtown facility will be renovated, according to the system, allowing expansion of physical therapy services currently provided there and addition of behavioral health and cardiac offerings.

Jan Bergen, president and CEO of Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health, said the center will be the only one in Elizabethtown “where patients can see a family physician or specialist, have access to care after hours through Urgent Care and immediate access to advanced imaging, physical therapy and lab testing in one location."

The center will not require appointments, with daily hours from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. for  sprains, cuts, burns, infections or flu symptoms and when patients cannot get in to see their family doctor, such as after hours or on holidays, according to the system.

Looking ahead

A recent article in the latest edition of Lancaster General Hospital’s medical journal focuses on urgent care and includes some items of interest.

It predicted the system’s 2019 fiscal year would end up with almost 114,000 urgent care visits, up from about 107,600 for the previous one.

However, it said, demand had leveled off a bit for two reasons: The system’s primary care practices have made it easier to be seen quickly, and “there appears to be some degree of market saturation,” with 12 urgent cares including the system’s current six in the area.

The article said while large-scale growth would be impractical, additional brick and mortal urgent cares are under consideration “in certain underserved micromarkets” but did not specify where.

More information

The Lancaster General journal article linked above is the second in a two-part series on urgent care. The first is here.