June 6, 2018

Above, Dr. Bruce Boros anticipates offering medical services to Upper Keys residents starting on Friday, June 15, at Advanced Urgent Care's new facility in place of Dr. Steven Lawyer's office, who will stay on. Left, Boros, stands in front of where the CT scanner will be placed. 
Theresa Java/Free Press

Above, Dr. Bruce Boros anticipates offering medical services to Upper Keys residents starting on Friday, June 15, at Advanced Urgent Care's new facility in place of Dr. Steven Lawyer's office, who will stay on. Left, Boros, stands in front of where the CT scanner will be placed.  Theresa Java/Free Press

KEY LARGO — Advanced Urgent Care expects to offer treatment for common medical emergencies and symptoms at a cost lower than a visit to an emergency room, according to facility founder and cardiologist Dr. Bruce Boros, M.D.

Boros has taken a break from working on people’s hearts to focus on bringing medical services to the Upper Keys for those without a life-threatening illness or emergency.

The Key Largo location joins the flagship facility Boros opened in Key West in 2013.

He said his new Key Largo facility could open the door to the uninsured population of the Upper Keys as his services cost a fraction of what hospitals charge.

“More than 50 percent of Americans can’t afford the average $500 car payment or healthcare bill,” Boros said, adding that an emergency room visit is cost prohibitive to lots of families, which convinces some people to forego treatment and suffer, and that’s not ideal.

The unpretentious, Dodge-driving doctor was reviewing construction work last week at his new 5,000-square-foot medical facility. He cautioned a visitor about nails on the floor and other hazards while navigating the facility. With the grand opening just a week away, Boros was confident things would come together quickly.

The facility features seven examination rooms, two nurse’s stations, a break room, a workstation, three bathrooms, a room for simple procedures, a lab, an x-ray room complete with a lead door, an infusion treatment room and a room readied for a CT scanner that is yet to come.

The Key Largo location absorbed the office of Dr. Steven Lawyer, D.O., who’s been practicing family medicine in the Upper Keys for about two decades.

Advanced Urgent Care isn’t competing with any local family practitioners, Boros said, rather it offers residents care if and when their primary doctor is not available.

While Lawyer will join the facility’s staff, his patients will be referred to other physicians.

“The ability to retain Dr. Lawyer is incredible. We are fortunate to have him,” Boros said.

The facility’s executive director is Boros’ son, Aaron. Day-to-day facility operations will alternate being overseen by Lawyer and Dr. Zivko Gajic, M.D., along with a nurse practitioner, a nurse and a medical assistant to start.

Advanced Urgent Care has hired 20 local employees and may expand to meet demand, according to Barros. 

The facility also welcomes tourists.

“We have in the Upper Keys 21 resorts within 10 miles of us. There are lots of new homes in the area. People will need medical care at an affordable price,” Boros said. “This saves people the trip up to the mainland, so that they can be seen faster and not have to contend with traffic.

“We look at the whole patient and address their concerns from top down. We try to help people get through the initial process of getting healthy.”

So when might a patient choose Advanced Urgent Care over his or her regular physician?

“Let’s say you wake up on Friday with a sore throat and your primary doctor is booked until Monday,” Boros said. “Your options are, you can tough it out over the weekend and hopefully it doesn’t get worse, and if it does, you can go to the emergency room. With us being here, you can come here instead and save time, save money and get well.”

The facility provides x-rays and ultrasounds as well as treatment for respiratory infections, lacerations and wounds, earaches, eye infections, headaches, migraines, strep throat and other ailments. It also offers school physicals, employee drug screening and lung screening.

Advanced Urgent Care is located at 100460 Overseas Highway. The facility accepts walk-ins and most health insurance plans, and offers a discount to cash payers. A list of these prices and more information is available under the FAQ page at urgentcarefloridakeys.com.

Advanced Urgent Care hours are 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.

A by-invitation-only grand opening is planned for 6 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, June 14. Hors d’oeuvres and refreshments will be provided and the facility opens for business the following day at 8:30 a.m.

tjava@keysnews.com