Urgent care centers are a great option for people who need medical care but don’t need to go to the emergency room. They are typically open seven days a week and offer a variety of services, including:
- Treatment for minor illnesses and injuries
- X-rays and other diagnostic tests
- Prescription medications
- Referrals to specialists
If you’re not sure whether you should go to the emergency room or an urgent care center, here are a few things to consider:
- The severity of your symptoms. If you have a life-threatening condition, such as a heart attack or stroke, you should go to the emergency room.
- The urgency of your need for care. If you need care right away, such as if you have a fever of 103 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, you should go to the emergency room.
- The availability of an urgent care center. If there is an urgent care center close to you that is open, you may want to consider going there instead of the emergency room.
If you decide to go to an urgent care center, here’s what you can expect:
- Check-in. When you arrive at the urgent care center, you will need to check in at the front desk. You will be asked to provide your name, insurance information, and the reason for your visit.
- Triage. After you check in, you will be triaged by a nurse or other medical professional. Triage is the process of determining the severity of your condition and how quickly you need to be seen by a doctor.
- Examination. Once you have been triaged, you will be seen by a doctor. The doctor will ask you about your symptoms and perform an examination.
- Treatment. If the doctor determines that you need treatment, they will provide it. This may include medication, physical therapy, or other services.
- Follow-up. The doctor may recommend that you follow up with your primary care doctor or another specialist.
Urgent care centers are a great option for people who need medical care but don’t need to go to the emergency room. They are typically more affordable than the emergency room and offer a variety of services. If you’re not sure whether you should go to the emergency room or an urgent care center, call your insurance company or your primary care doctor for advice.