Black doctors are making power moves in medicine. According to the Chicago Crusader, a group of African American medical professionals joined forces to open up Chicago’s only Black-owned urgent care facility.
The center—dubbed Premier Health Urgent Care—is the only one of its kind in the Hyde Park community. It was a collaborative effort between Reuben C. Rutland, MD, Airron Richardson, MD, Michael A. McGee, MD, and former NFL player Dr. Gregory Primus. Aware of the lack of access to adequate health services, they were determined to cultivate a space where individuals can receive proper care and support. The center goes beyond providing urgent care, it has mental health and wellness services as well.
“We are happy to open an urgent care in Hyde Park because the community needs it. I see so many urban professionals who either delay or go without care because of time constraints. No one has 8 hours to wait in the emergency department for a minor illness or the flexibility to wait 3 weeks because their primary care doctor is booked solid. We are here to help fill that gap,” Dr. Rutland said in a statement. “We are not in competition with the doctors’ offices or the emergency department. We are a supplement to them both, to help relieve the stress on those two facilities.”
The founders are also using the center as an avenue to combat violence in Chicago. They will give some of its profits to an organization called Project Outreach and Prevention which develops programming for at-risk youth in an effort to keep them off the streets and on the right track.
There are several Black medical professionals launching urgent care centers designed to help individuals from underserved communities. In 2018, Dr. Tamara Moise and Wadson Fils opened the doors to Big Apple Urgent Care, Brooklyn’s first Black-owned urgent care center.