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ABQ Health Partners changes name, opens flagship clinic


Esther Otero, the head nurse in Adult Medicine, moves some equipment into a patient room at the new DaVita Medical Group clinic near the airport on Wednesday. (Greg Sorber/Albuquerque Journal)

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The healthcare provider formerly known as ABQ Health Partners is having a busy February.

The multi-specialty medical group officially launched a new name this week — DaVita Medical Group — and earlier in the month opened a new flagship clinic.

Nearly a year after the organization said it would build an 85,000-square-foot facility near the Albuquerque International Sunport, the clinic is open for business. It is on an eight-acre plot on Transport Street, east of Interstate and west of Mulberry Street.

The name change has been in the works for some time, with ABQ Health Partners the first of the parent company’s medical groups nationwide to launch the DaVita name on signs and other corporate branding, said Melissa Steffan, vice president for business development for the local medical group. “It’s the same team, services and providers.” Steffan said the two-story facility on Transport positions the company to grow its patient base. The medical group had outgrown its leased space at the Gibson Healthcare Center at 5400 Gibson SE. The space was poorly designed with bad lighting and long hallways.

At Sunport, the new clinic has large windows and colors that highlight a “welcoming, tranquil atmosphere,” said Steffan.

Citing DaVita’s policy, she declined to reveal land acquisition and construction costs but said the local economy will realize an “uplift” in jobs associated with construction, architectural planning and landscaping. In addition, there has been hiring at the new center to fill jobs in several departments.

While general contractor Klinger Constructors was putting the finishing touches on the clinic, the administrative staff in December moved to new corporate headquarters at 303 Roma Ave downtown.

DaVita Medical Group in New Mexico has 17 locations in the Albuquerque metro area and 900 employees and is owned by DaVita Inc., which manages and operates medical groups and affiliated physician networks in California, Nevada, New Mexico, Florida, Colorado and Washington.

To provide a continuum of care, DaVita will have specialists at the new clinic, including dermatologists, neurologists, pediatricians, podiatrists, rheumatologists and radiologists.