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New Cicero urgent care facility to serve pediatric, adult patients

A patient care room at Drakos Clinical Dynamics new urgent care facility in Cicero, Feb. 1.
Ellen Abbott
A patient care room at Drakos Clinical Dynamics new urgent care facility in Cicero, Feb. 1.

Drakos Clinical Dynamics is opening a second urgent care location in Syracuse’s northern suburbs, available to both pediatric and adult patients.

The clinic opens Monday on Route 31 in the Town of Cicero. It comes at a time when a major urgent care player in central New York, WellNow, stopped taking Excellus BlueCrossBlueShield insurance, leaving some of those patients without an urgent care outlet. CEO Heather Drake Bianchi said this new clinic accepts Excellus and while that wasn’t the impetus for opening the new clinic, it may have an impact on the future.

"It just serendipitously happened that way," Bianchi said. "And then the pressure to open became more so. That's why we're opening doors on Monday because the community is reaching out. We get 20 plus phone calls a day. 'Are you taking adults? Are you taking adults?' And we'll have adults show up at the pediatric urgent care."

Bianchi said the response may have an impact on the future.

“We always planned to do this and then the Excellus thing happened," Bianchi said. "We got a huge number of phone calls so we're all looking at each other like What do we do if we get buried in patients? What's our plan? So we're looking at plans to expand from here, but we want to see how it goes, spend a little bit time look at the census and if we get absolutely buried in patients, we know how to operationalize really quickly.”

Onondaga County Heath Commissioner Dr. Kathryn Anderson said urgent cares provide a vital service at a time when access to health care is a challenge for many.

"Urgent cares fill a particularly critical role for folks who may not have a primary care, can't get into their primary care and have a condition that may not merit the emergency department, but they need a stopgap in between to be able to be evaluated in a timely manner," Anderson said. "Something comes up you weren't expecting an urgent healthcare need, and we need places for people to be evaluated that are not our overwhelmed emergency departments."

The 3,000 square foot clinic features eight patient care spaces, a critical care room, as well as onsite lab testing and x-rays.

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County. Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered.