Diseases and illness are unpredictable, just like accidents and injuries. They can happen when least expected. When you or any of your close family falls ill, you may feel confused about the best place to find care. It can be especially troubling when your young child comes down with a fever and a cough. Because you love your child so much, you want to protect them from any type of pain. It is perhaps most disturbing then that it seems your child always seems to become sick at night. Seasonal ailments like cold and cough, rashes, pink eye, and ear infections, and even minor injuries like sprains, burns, cuts, and bruises always seem to happen whenever the doctor’s office is closed. Yet they still need prompt medical care.
These conditions are often serious and pressing but not life-threatening. Hence, they are perfectly suited to be treated at one of the country’s many urgent care clinics or centers. These centers can typically provide a level of service equivalent to a primary physician’s office, but offer prompt treatment, similar to an emergency room, yet without the long wait. Moreover, due to the non-life threatening but urgent nature of these minor medical problems, they are not well suited to be treated at an emergency room where the patients are seen based on the severity of their illness/injury. Patients with a minor issue can be subjected to significant wait times before they are admitted to see a doctor. Yet, even when they are admitted, the doctor can often be in a rush to continue treating more serious cases, and the patient can feel rushed. Urgent care clinics with their board-certified and experienced doctors along with courteous staff are more than willing and prepared to treat patients with a sense of urgency, passion and integrity. Owing to the fact that these common ailments and injuries keep on occurring, sometimes at odd times, urgent care centers typically operate beyond normal office hours and are usually open during weekends to provide unscheduled medical care.
Urgent care centers, due to their convenience and easy access to medical care, have become so popular that some people prefer them to any other type of medical facility. They are usually ideally positioned in locations which are easily accessible to patients and close to their homes so they don’t have to waste precious time traveling before they can see a doctor. Various studies have estimated that there are approximately 8,700 urgent care centers in the United States, with more opening all the time. These centers are part of the ever expanding healthcare effort to provide easy access to care to patients across the country. Another reason why people prefer urgent care centers is the affordable cost of care.
Rising healthcare costs can force people to compare prices of the same treatment before going to a medical facility. It is even more important for people who do not have any insurance coverage. Due to the costs of treatment, many sick people who lack coverage choose to forgo medical care, which can lead to a worsening of symptoms or additional long term issues. Emergency rooms will often be the option of last resort for people, unless they are suffering from a serious and life threatening issue, as the costs of treatment in emergency rooms in hospitals are always higher than any other medical facility. In comparison, urgent care centers are highly economical and affordable. Even people who do not have health insurance coverage can find the costs of treatment to be quite reasonable. Urgent care centers generally accept various insurance plans as well, making it even more convenient for people with coverage to receive urgent medical care. Hence, urgent care centers provide a cheaper and more affordable option when compared to other types of medical facilities without compromising the quality of care.
It is also heartening to see their preparedness to handle any urgent and serious medical case. Urgent care clinics are well equipped with the latest technology and can handle most medical tasks. You can find facilities like drug test labs, and x-rays, and well equipped with modern computers and electronic systems for procedures like suturing or casting right in the clinic. You need not visit another facility for additional care. This level of care only serves to enhance the reputation of urgent care centers as well equipped and capable of treating a wide range of minor and non-life threatening ailments and injuries. Medical experts say that urgent care centers play an important role in the healthcare system while helping to save people from exorbitant health care bills.