The modern medical industry is a large and varied one, and there is more to it than the emergency room (though it certainly includes that, too). Every day, many Americans young and old suffer from injuries or illnesses that call for professional medical attention, and a nearby person may look up the correct healthcare sites to help. This may mean looking up local urgent care centers or emergency care providers on a PC or smartphone, and a search may show the hours, location, and name of all urgent care centers or hospitals in the area. Not all urgent care centers or emergency care providers are open 24 hours a day, though, so a person may need to look them up specifically if a victim needs help at an odd time of day. But what is the difference between looking up “urgent care near me” and “emergency clinics near me?” It is important to know the differences between urgent care centers and emergency care providers, since they are hardly the same thing.
Emergency Care Done Right
Emergency care is the highest level of medical attention, and it may be provided at a hospital’s ER or an emergency clinic, where doctors and physicians will have the right training and equipment to save a life. Often, patients are in serious condition and may even have a life-threatening injury or illness. For example, a patient may be brought into the ER if they have a broken leg or broken arm, or they may have suffered an injury to the head or their eyeballs. Similarly, bullet wounds or stab wounds will also call for the ER, and those wounds might be bleeding heavily. Chest pain and difficulty breathing also call for the ER, since these conditions might soon turn life threatening at any moment (if they are not already). And what about abdominal pain? Most cases of abdominal pain are harmless and soon pass, but if that pain is severe, sudden, and/or long lasting, then it is time or emergency care, since the pain’s underlying cause might be quite serious.
It should be noted that while an ER can provide extensive medical care, emergency care is not a catch-all medical provider. Emergency clinics and ERs are best reserved for patients in dire medical condition, and it is often time consuming and expensive to visit them if the patient’s condition is actually a minor one. For minor medical cases, a patient is urged to visit a walk in clinic instead. And if it is not clear what level of care a victim needs, then they may be taken to a hybrid clinic that offers both urgent and emergency care side by side. A person might look up these hybrid clinics specifically with an online search.
What to Expect From Urgent Care Clinics
Meanwhile, urgent care providers can take care of minor medical cases that do not require the ER, and visiting these urgent care centers is often much cheaper and faster than going to the ER. This is why it’s often known as getting “convenient care.” This is a large and growing industry; ever since the year 2000, over 2,500 urgent care centers have been built a cross the United States, and most of them are small, independent clinics that are staffed with nurse practitioners and physicians. If such a clinic is running smoothly, it may see three patients per hour, and a guest may expect a wait time of around 15 minutes or so. Many of these clinics accept various healthcare insurance policies, too. Many walk in clinics are found in strip malls for easy access and parking, and others might be built into a retailer for the convenience of shoppes. Others are built into hospitals.
Guests can visit urgent care clinics to get a prescription drug refill at the clinic’s pharmacy, or they can get medicinal relief from the common cold and flu during influenza season. A guest here might also get stitches or bandages for a shallow cut or wound (courtesy of nurses on staff), and they can also get lotion or ointment for skin rashes and sunburn. These clinics can provide treatments (such as braces) for wrist sprains or ankle sprains, and 80% of clinics may provide care for bone fractures.