NovaStar Urgent Care, a Black-owned urgent care facility, is now open in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Natalie Jones said she opened the facility to address the great need for urgent healthcare in her community. Although there are many primary care offices in north Tulsa, Jones said it’s hard to find facilities for patients who need to be seen urgently.

“It’s unfortunate, the life expectancy is 14 years less in north Tulsa than in other areas of Tulsa and that is probably because there’s not enough medical care for everyone that needs care,” Jones said in an interview with Fox 23 News, “so my goal is to bridge the gap and to get one community member, one family member at a time on their journey to health so we can be a healthy community in north Tulsa because just because where you live should not dictate how long you live.”

For the past three years, Jones and her partners have been running another facility in North Tulsa known as NovaStar Family Medicine. Now, as the group opens the new center, Jones wants to make sure that people understand the purpose of urgent care.

“Non-emergencies that need immediate care is what the urgent care is for. So, you cut your finger while you’re cooking,” Jones told News On 6. “Your children come home and they’re sick. But you didn’t come home until 6 o’clock, but they can’t go to school the next day and you need a note for school. That’s an urgent care need.”

NovaStar Urgent Care, which officially opened on Tuesday, will serve people seven days a week. Community activist Kristi Williams is among the residents who are raving about the new facility.

“It’s really good for north Tulsa,” Williams told KTUL. “There’s a huge life expectancy gap between whites and Blacks in Tulsa.”

Jones said it’s also good to know that residents in north Tulsa will no longer need to travel far to get urgent care.

“We’re just trying to fill a void in the community to help decrease the disparities that you see in healthcare,” Jones said.