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UF Health is partnering with a community developer to develop a new model for integrated health and wellness.

Rendering courtesy of Raydiant Places + Properties

University of Florida Health (UF Health) is part of a new development that aims to create a national model for healthier communities.

The new community, Wildlight, is being built in Nassau County, Fla., and is the brainchild of residential developer Raydient Places + Properties. In addition to the typical homes and retail sites found in master-planned developments, Wildlight will encompass facilities dedicated to health care.

“One of our goals at Wildlight is to create a community that promotes healthier living, so we went looking for a partner with broad and deep capabilities to bring the vision to life,” says Chris Corr, president of Raydient. “That effort led us to the University of Florida and UF Health, and we are thrilled to welcome them to Wildlight.”

For its part, UF Health says its goal is to ensure a forward-looking approach to prevention, early detection and health promotion using a combination of health, education, fitness and recreation programs.

UF Health’s first contribution to the multiyear project will be a new health care facility located adjacent to a local highway. The urgent care facility will include emergency medicine faculty, primary care providers who use a patient-centered model focused on prevention and early diagnosis, and an imaging center. Future programs will include other medical specialists, such as obstetrics, sports medicine, dentistry, orthopaedics and occupational and speech therapy, depending on the community’s needs and interests.

Other facilities in the planning stages will focus on wellness, including a fitness and lifestyle campus and smart parks. UF Health also plans to offer virtual programs, and envisions using Wildlight’s high-speed communications network to connect and communicate with residents and community members.

The academic medical center is in the planning and design stages, and construction is expected to begin next year.

“Part of the mission of the University of Florida and UF Health is to shape a better future for Florida, the nation and the world,” says David S. Guzick, M.D., Ph.D., senior vice president for health affairs at the university and president of UF Health. “Our ambition is for the innovations that we pioneer at Wildlight to become model programs that can positively influence communities across Florida, the U.S. and maybe even beyond.”