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Healthcare Network opens new Nichols Community Health Center

Healthcare Network, a nonprofit organization working to ensure primary medical care is accessible to everyone in the community has opened the three-story, 51,000-square-foot Nichols Community Health Center in Golden Gate.

“More than six years in the making, the Nichols Community Health Center is a real beacon of hope in what has become a dark time for many people in our community,” said Dr. Emily Ptaszek, President and CEO of Healthcare Network. “This new health center will provide the greater Golden Gate community with affordable, integrated and compassionate primary healthcare, regardless of their economic status, offering a critical resource to many of our unemployed friends and neighbors during the COVID-19 crisis. We are extremely grateful to our donors, board members, community partners, and dedicated staff, for making this center a reality.”

While Golden Gate, which is home to an estimated 36,000 residents, is located just a few miles from one of the wealthiest zip codes in America, it has been identified as one of the most underserved communities in Collier County. In a 2012 professional study used to determine the need for the center, Golden Gate was shown to have significant lack of primary healthcare including prenatal care, behavioral health and dental care. In 2012, more than 40% of the working population in Golden Gate was employed in service and sales jobs with incomes lower than nearly 82% of United States neighborhoods.

The Nichols Community Health Center will provide improved access to primary healthcare to residents, including restaurant, hospitality and retail workers – many of whom are facing unemployment due to the pandemic. Since 1977, Healthcare Network has been committed to filling gaps in care by providing high quality primary medical care, regardless of a patient’s insurance or employment status. A Sliding Fee Discount Program reduces costs to uninsured and underinsured patients based on their income and family size.

Services offered at the Nichols Community Health Center include children’s care, obstetrics and gynecology, adult and senior care, integrated behavioral health and drive-thru pharmacy. Dental care and walk-in health are expected to open in the near future.

“Sometimes it’s been difficult to travel from Golden Gate, where we didn’t have a center of this nature,” said Gloria Peterson of Golden Gate. “So, it makes me very happy for the community.”

Healthcare Network provides cutting edge, best-of-class integrated primary care addressing the whole person – both body and mind. This integrated care model blends primary care and mental health into one setting, allowing patients to experience a true team-based approach to healthcare. The model is highly effective because patients often seek medical care for physical symptoms that are related to or caused by behavioral issues.

Located at 12655 Collier Blvd., Healthcare Network broke ground in January 2019 on the $15 million medical center named after a gift from Naples resident Jerry Nichols.


About Healthcare Network

Healthcare Network is committed to ensuring quality healthcare is accessible to everyone in our community, regardless of income or insurance status. Founded in 1977 to serve migrant farmworkers and their families in Immokalee, Healthcare Network now provides care to approximately 50,000 patients through practices throughout Collier County including the Ronald McDonald Care Mobile® and the Health and Smiles Mobile units. Healthcare Network provides primary healthcare services including family care, obstetrics and gynecology, pediatrics, senior care, and pharmacy as well as dental care and integrated behavioral health for both adults and children. The organization’s newest location, the Nichols Community Health Center, is a 51,000-square-foot primary care medical center in Golden Gate. For more information, visit www.HealthcareSWFL.org, or to schedule an appointment, please call 239-658-3000.

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