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Important Spring Safety and Health Tips

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The spring time brings warmer weather. It also brings drastic changes in weather, increased rain amounts, and more sporting accidents. People tend to spend much more time outdoors in the spring after being cooped up for the entire winter. This spring, prevent illness and injury, and be prepared to handle medical emergencies. Have a family health plan so that everyone understands how to handle a medical illness or emergency. Know when to visit your local after hours urgent care or wait until you can schedule an appointment with your primary physician. Remember the following spring and summer safety and health tips.

Wear protective equipment

A lot of people cannot wait until they can pull their bikes, roller blades, or skateboards out of the garage and roll down the city sidewalks. Remember to also pull out your protective equipment. Helmets should always be worn to protect the head. Knee pads and elbow pads are also important. If you are not entirely stable on your wheels, also consider a mouth guard. You are more likely to suffer a biking injury in the spring, as you are not yet conditioned for the required stamina after a long winter off.

If you do suffer a fall while biking or roller blading, evaluate your injuries. If you are unable to move, visit the local after hours urgent care center or emergency walk in clinic. If you suffered some scraps and cuts, clean them up properly, cover them, and continue to monitor them. If you have any previous back or neck injuries, schedule an appointment when your primary physician for a proper medical evaluation.

Wear reflective gear

Perhaps one of the most common types of injuries related to biking accidents also involves automobiles. When you bike after the sun has set, it is difficult for drivers to notice you. This is especially common in the spring months, as it still gets darker earlier in the evening. Your reflective gear may be just as important as the helmet that you wear. It allows drivers to identify your location and to keep a safe distance. It can be helpful to equip both your bike and your clothing with reflective tape for better views.

Remember sunscreen, even in the early spring months

A large percentage of people do not regularly wear sunscreen. Sunscreen is necessary even when the skies appear cloudy or when it is not that warm, such as in the spring months. Doctors agree that sun damage can contribute up to 80% of skin aging, more than smoking, inadequate sleep, and dehydration. Regular sunscreen is important any time you are outdoors for an extended period of time. Although sunburns do not usually require after hours urgent care visits, severe sunburns should be monitored and evaluated by a medical professional. Even your local health clinic for women should regular look for suspicious signs of sun damage.

Stings and bug bites

The spring also brings a significant increase in stings and bug bites. Most stings and bug bites can be cared for from home, but they should also be monitored. People with allergies or severe reactions should consider visiting the local family health care center for medications. If you notice any difficulty in breathing or a spread of the rash, visit a family health clinic immediately. Remember that emergency rooms often have longer waits than after hours urgent care clinics. Between 2003 and 2009, the mean wait time in ERs went up by a quarter, from 46.5 minutes to 58.1 minutes. Consider these wait times when a medical emergency arises.

The spring is a long awaited time of the year. You can finally leave the warmth of your home and reintroduce yourself to the beauty of the outdoors. This spring, remember to practice safe health habits. Wear sunscreen on even mildly sunny days, monitor bug bites and stings, wear protective and reflective clothing when biking, and devise a family medical emergency plan ahead of time. Know how you will handle a medical emergency and know where you will go.

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How Urgent Care Facilities Are Essential in the Healthcare Industry Today

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The U.S. healthcare system is currently going through quite a few changes, and although the end goal is to make healthcare more accessible and affordable for all Americans, right now it seems like the exact opposite has occurred. Many people simply can’t afford health insurance and therefore never see regular family care physicians for health concerns; at the same time, even though more people are visiting hospital emergency rooms as a result, dozens of hospitals and ERs across the country have closed due to their own financial troubles.

This trend has resulted in more urgent care facilities springing up everywhere — not just domestically, but in plenty of other countries as well. The walk in health clinic trend actually began back in the 1970s, although it wasn’t until recent years that medical walk in clinics became such an integral part of family heath care.

The main benefit of going to one of these walk in clinics is two-fold: you can receive medical care much faster than if you went to an ER, often without making an appointment in advance, and you end up paying much less than what the typical ER bill costs.

Another important factor is convenience: According to the most recent data, there are an estimated 9,300 urgent care facilities in the U.S. alone, and there are about 20,000 physicians who currently provide medical care at an urgent care clinic. No matter where you are in the U.S. (and in many other countries as well), you’ll be able to find a walk in health clinic and receive treatment immediately, even if you’ve never been there before and even if you don’t have insurance.

And finally, it’s important to note that many neighborhood health clinics have turned into specialized facilities that can offer advanced medical care; many clinics provide services specifically for women, while others employ more pediatric doctors than regular family physicians. Additionally, most urgent care facilities offer a variety of services beyond just emergency care, such as lab work and STD testing, for which patients can schedule appointments in advance and receive care when they want it.

The average urgent care center certainly can’t replace regular doctors’ offices and hospital ERs, but it’s clear that these facilities are becoming more important than ever before.