Believe it or not, but many people in the U.S. live so far from a hospital emergency room that it would be too far to travel if a real medical emergency occurred. This is the truth for people who live in farming communities, but it is also true for many people who live in urban areas, too. But for some people, the closest medical facility is a hospital, which actually works to their disadvantage, since not all medical queries or situations require hospital care. Not to mention that many times, hospital emergency rooms are far too busy and crowded to be able to administer quality care on patients — especially if they come in with non-life threatening disorders. That’s where urgent care centers come in. Read on to find out exactly what is urgent care services provide and when you should use them.
What is Urgent Care?
Most of the time, urgent care centers are owned by a physician or a group of physicians (they own 50% of these types of centers). They are designed to provide easy access, quality healthcare. But despite their name, urgent care centers are not where one would go for life-threatening situations. Instead, one would seek urgent care facilities for symptoms such as serve coughs, minor broken bones and fractures, urinary tract infections, eye irritations, fevers or flus, skin rashes or infections, or diagnostics services.
What Are the Advantages of Urgent Care?
There are many advantages of seeking care at an urgent care center rather than a hospital. 57% of urgent care centers have a wait time of 15 minutes or less to be seen — a lot faster than you’d get seen at a hospital emergency room. Plus, they run up significantly less cost, which is important especially because the conditions that one would go to an urgent care center for are much less likely to need further care. If you want advice or consultation of any sort, it is a much better idea to go to an urgent care center than to anywhere else.
For most ailments, it is a good idea to go to an urgent care center — you will get faster, better, and cheaper service. But for real emergency, don’t hesitate to rush to a hospital.