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A compilation of 2022 and 2023 de novo urgent care center data shows a 7% decline in new locations: from 1,651 de novo centers in 2022 to 1,540 in 2023.

A “de novo” center is a new urgent care location where services were not offered previously. The unit of measure is the physical site, meaning if an existing location already in operation happened to change ownership, such change is not counted as de novo growth. If a center is closed permanently, meaning services are no longer offered at the location, then it is counted as a closure.

The data provided here reflect gross additions, exclusive of closures.

Overall, as the de novos saw a decrease between 2022 and 2023, the greatest decline occurred among the 5- to 9-unit operators. Single unit and 2- to 4-center operators remained steady as a percentage of total de novos. Meanwhile, the least of the declines was seen among the large “enterprise” operators that have 10 or more urgent care units.

Last year produced the addition of 486 health-system-affiliated locations versus the 490 that were added in 2022. As a percentage of total de novos, health-system-affiliated participation increased by 6% year over year (YOY), while non-health-system-affiliated participation declined by 3%. 

Urgent Care De Novo Growth
Urgent Care De Novo Growth by Operator Size, 2022-2023

Alan A. Ayers, MBA, MAcc

President of Experity Consulting and is Practice Management Editor of The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine