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Here at the Urgent Care Association (UCA), we often used to ask ourselves, “Is this a UCA thing or a College thing or a Foundation thing?” Over the past few years of talking to all of you, I learned that we were not the only ones asking this question.

When you build a house, over the years, you may add on a fantastic new sunroom, then an expansive extra bedroom, and then maybe you remodel your kitchen. At the end of all that work—no matter how great the parts are—you probably have some extra work to do to make it all look like it goes together again.

That’s some of the work we’ve been doing: Figuring out exactly what work belongs to UCA, what belongs to the College of Urgent Care Medicine (CUCM), what belongs to the Urgent Care Foundation (UCF), and how all of our work weaves together to drive momentum for our members and Urgent Care as a whole.

We believe understanding who does what matters because there is a lot of great work going on, and a lot of ways to get involved in that work, and a lot of people interested in being involved. We want to make it as easy as possible to understand how everything hangs together, so getting clarity around “who’s on first” was a critical piece.  Now we have to be able to explain it.

We have a gigantic map that illustrates it all. It has to be gigantic because there is so much good work happening, and it almost all interconnects. If you are at the Urgent Care Convention this month, you can literally walk around it and explore. We are thinking about creating an interactive digital version of this “entity map” to come later in the year.

What’s essential for you to know now is that each of the entities in our Urgent Care universe have Core Purposes and have divided up their work to align directly with those Core Purposes. There’s way more to this (hence the giant map), but the below broadly outlines who’s on first for what:

Urgent Care Association Core Purpose: Ensure the advancement and long-term success of Urgent Care.

  • Ensure advancement through empowering best practice
    • Set center standards
    • Provide resources
    • Operational and impact benchmarking
  • Ensure long-term success through advocacy
    • Lobby
    • Raise awareness
    • Create connections

College of Urgent Care Medicine Core Purpose: Achieve specialty recognition for Urgent Care.

  • Lead Clinical Practice Excellence
    • Define clinician competence
    • Engage leaders
    • Promote evidence-based practice
    • Recognize excellence

Urgent Care Foundation Core Purpose: Enable the viability of Urgent Care.

  • Support recognition and research
    • Award grants for original research in clinical and administrative areas
    • Recognize Urgent Care achievers
    • Raise awareness of Urgent Care
    • Support special initiatives
    • Raise funds through events and campaigns
Who’s on First?

There’s obviously a lot more to this seeing as how  we need a giant illustration to show it, so we’ve also created a document with additional details on all of the above. We’ll have copies of it at the Urgent Care Convention, and you can get it at It helps show how all this work weaves together.

Lastly, we’ve realized that the giant illustration is pretty impractical for everyday use, so we’ve created a mini version that can fit in your pocket.  You can see a legible version by clicking the QR code.

Urgent Care has a big story to tell, and we are (still) just getting started. 

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Who’s on First?

Lou Ellen Horwitz, MA

Director of Staff Development & Communication at MultiCare Retail Health & Community-Based Care, Chief Operating Officer at the Urgent Care Association