When one or yourself is in need of immediate health care, the last place you’ll want to be is stuck waiting in a hospital emergency room. Luckily, the availability of walk in doctors at urgent care facilities provides a reliable, and hassle-free healthcare solution for non-life threatening, emergency ailments. Urgent care centers are intended to ease the burden on emergency rooms by providing an emergency care facility for patients with non-life threatening injuries and illnesses, and often the patient will be able to follow up with his or her primary care physician, just like they would after a typical visit to the emergency room.
Recent research by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention claims that almost half (48%) of adult ER patients, who were not sick enough to be admitted to the hospital, said they sought out health care at the ER because their physicians’ offices were closed. It is instances such as these non-qualified ER patients that cause emergency rooms to be full with patients, leading to extremely long wait times. Visiting an urgent care facility is a much more efficient way for patients to receive treatment for illnesses and injuries such as the flu, sprains, strains or broken bones, eye or ear infections or even cuts, wounds and burns. Urgent care centers perform just like a hospital emergency room. With the availability of walk in doctors, patients can simply walk in to an urgent care center, and often receive treatment with little to no waiting time. With only 29% of primary care doctors providing after-hours coverage, urgent care hours are typically opened 24 hours, allowing patients to walk in during all hours of the day.
In the spring of 2009, the Urgent Care Association of America established the Certified Urgent Care Center designation program for national urgent care centers. Since then, the program has grown to almost 500 certified centers nationwide. As a result, patients can receive certified immediate health care from these centers, typically at costs much less than you will find at a hospital emergency room. In fact, an emergency department visit costs an average of $1,500; while treatment at an urgent care center costs, on average, under $150. So next time you find yourself seeking emergency healthcare, consider skipping the hospital emergency room, and head to your local urgent care center. Ger more information on this topic here.