Freestanding emergency rooms providing urgent care services are now incredibly vital health care providers for people all around the world. As new centers open, thousands of people now have access to emergency and preventative care, without enduring the waiting time in hospital emergency rooms. Although these centers sometimes have slightly different offerings, there are urgent…
Urgent Care Versus the Emergency Room
You probably have an urgent care facility near you, but do you know when you should go to this clinic? You may first think of going to your family doctor for illnesses. However, if your doctor is unavailable, urgent care clinics can diagnose and treat a wide variety of conditions for you and your family members. The emergency room can also be a valuable resource in a time of medical need. This does not mean you should go here for any ailment. It is important to distinguish between the two places and when it is appropriate to go to each.
Different care for different needs
Life can throw all kinds of physical problems at people. Sickness and accidents of different types and levels of concern can hit anyone at any time. Emergency rooms and urgent treatment facilities are available to help identify issues and provide solutions to these medical challenges. Some conditions require immediate care and threaten a person’s life. Others may cause nagging pain but can wait for a remedy. Patients need to understand the most effective way to handle these situations.
When to go to the urgent care center
These facilities are much like a regular doctor’s office. They can treat minor or moderate illnesses and injuries. People should plan on going here for illnesses such as sore throats, earaches, the flu, long-lasting colds, stomachaches and any other non-life-threatening condition. If the patient is feeling uncomfortable but can still function, these facilities are the right place to go for help.
When to go to the ER
Patients should reserve the emergency room for the most serious conditions. Some of these include difficulty in breathing, severe bleeding, heart attack or significant chest pain, stroke or when the loss of a limb is possible. The ER will handle conditions where a person’s life is at stake. If the injury or illness incapacitates the person, it is a good idea to go to the emergency room. A family member, friend or neighbor can drive the person to the ER, or, better yet, someone should call 911, so an ambulance can transport the patient there.
Benefits of urgent care clinics
An urgent care facility is open later and longer than the primary care physician’s office. This clinic is usually available until late into the evening and on the weekends. Some people think going to the ER is beneficial even for moderate conditions. However, wait times are shorter at clinics. Plus, patients will pay much less at a clinic than in an emergency room. There are also more urgent treatment places than hospital emergency rooms.
It is not necessarily wrong to go to the ER for conditions that do not threaten your life. However, you should allow the staff in these places to care for more serious situations. If your doctor is unavailable, and you have a minor or moderate health concern that is causing you grief, head to an urgent care clinic. You can get effective care and the help you are looking for when you come here.
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