|Doctors Care has opened its newest location in the 1500 block of Main Street. The company expects to serve a growing student population that’s living in the downtown area as well as employees of surrounding businesses. (Photo/Chuck Crumbo)|
Published Nov. 19, 2015
An avid runner, David Boucher spends most early mornings jogging down Columbia’s Main Street.
The president and CEO of UCI Medical Affiliates saw the transformation the downtown corridor was undertaking. And he wanted to be part of it.
“He’s going, ‘This place is starting to thrive, we need to get an office on Main Street,’” recalled Thomas Gibbons, the president and chief medical officer of Doctor’s Care. “That was really where that idea came from. Me and David talked about it and we said, ‘Let’s go for it.’”
The urgent care location, situated at 1538 Main St. across from the Columbia Museum of Art, officially opened its doors Thursday morning. The location will cater toward University of South Carolina students – particularly those nearby in the Hub high-rise dorm – and the surrounding businesses and residents.
A discount is also offered to USC students, marketing director Jill Armbruster said. The 2,600-square-foot facility, which includes a large lobby and four exam rooms, will be led by physicians Fatimah Omar Jah and Amanda Pennington.
The office, which offers online check-in and walk-in services, is open Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
“There’s a lot of people that are moving down into this area and they’re going to need a doctor,” Gibbons said.
Gibbons admits these facilities typically gravitate toward suburban areas, but recent trends suggest companies like Doctors Care continuing to move into downtown metro markets.
“We try to stay on the leading edge of what’s going on,” he said. “What is going on is in major cities, particularly, this is happening. It’s a matter of a timing thing, whether it’s a good time for Columbia or not. And I think it is.”
Reach Chris Cox at 803-726-7545 or on Twitter @chrisbcox.
How big- rooms- two providers