Going to Urgent Care

It is a simple truth that even when Americans take good care of their health, incidents and injury will happen from time to time, so people today are urged to know what sort of medical treatment they should get, and where to find it. Knowing the difference between different health care providers and what they do is also important for getting the right care at the right price, and going to the wrong one could mean trouble. What is urgent care used for? Why visit 24 hour emergency care? And what is the difference between urgent and emergency care, even if they sound similar to each other? Knowing how to find these places and what to expect there can in fact save a life, or at least save a patient the hassle of going to the wrong place.

Visiting Emergency Care

Emergency care is for more serious cases, and often involves visiting a hospital and its ER, or the emergency room, and/or the ICU, the intensive care unit. In nearly all cases, a life threatening injury or other condition must be addressed at a hospital where emergency care can be found, and this can save a life. Why visit the emergency room? Some injuries are life-threatening and must be handled here, as opposed to at a health clinic. Broken arms or legs, head wounds, eye injuries, bullet or stab wounds, heart attacks, strokes, and serious chest pain or difficulty breathing are all valid reasons to visit the ER so a patient can be stabilized and taken out of harm’s way. The doctors and physicians at an ER will have the training and equipment to handle this. However, it has been found that not everyone who visits the ER even needs to; in fact, about 44% to 65% of all ER cases could have been handled at a walk in clinic instead. The problem is that these patients are paying more than they have to for care, and they are taking up room that patients with life-threatening issues need. For this reason, the ER is best saved for those with a life-threatening ailment, and other patients are urged instead to visit a 24 hour walk in clinic.

What is Urgent Care Used For?

Urgent care can be considered the milder cousin of emergency care, and the good news is that urgent care clinics are very common across the United States and are often fast and affordable to visit, and while not all are open 24 hours a day or seven days a week, many of them are, and this can be a great help for someone needing treatment for a non life-threatening condition or illness. Searching for “24 hour urgent care near me” into a smart phone or a computer can show someone the name and address of local clinics that they can visit, as well as the hours of operation.

With all this in mind, what is urgent care used for? These clinics take care of the everyday illnesses and wounds that people may suffer, and these clinics may also refill or prescribe prescription drugs for their patients as needed. The common cold and flu viruses, for example, may be treated with medicine here if the symptoms are serious or taking a long time to go away. Allergies or food poisoning may also be treated at such a clinic, as can rashes or upper respiratory problems.

Answering “what is urgent care used for?” extends to covering minor injuries that a person may sustain in everyday life. Cuts that require stitches can be taken care of by the nurse practitioners and the physicians on staff at a clinic, and ankle or wrist sprains, which are common among Americans, can be treated at these clinics as well, not to mention bone fractures. In general, four out of five urgent care clinics will care for bone fractures. Getting treatment for these issues does not have to be a hassle; in fact, it has been found that these clinics, if running smoothly, may see three patients per hour, and a patient may expect an average wait time of about 15 minutes. An urgent clinic is also more cost friendly than a hospital.