Have you ever wondered why urgent care facilities are opening up all over the USA these days? The primary reason is the growing need for immediate help for patients who require treatment within 24 hours, no matter the type and severity of their injury or illness. That said, urgent care isn’t meant to replace a proper, fully functional hospital. Instead, it exists to provide you with an option when you do not have enough time to book an appointment with your local hospital or your regular family physician. Moreover, urgent care is a more cost-effective and faster alternative to a hospital ER, considering the injury or illness may not always be life-threatening.
Urgent care professionals such as physician’s assistants, physicians, and nurse practitioners can offer you the same quality of care and service as a well-known, reputable hospital. That said, listed below are a few benefits this facility provides people and the overall healthcare system.
Urgent care centers offer quick access to board-certified healthcare professionals
Nowadays, you don’t need to visit a hospital or a doctor’s office to see a skilled and qualified healthcare provider. Not to mention, you don’t need to sit in the ER for hours upon hours for the doctor to arrive. While nurses generally operate walk-in clinics, board-certified professionals, on the other hand, run and manage urgent care centers.
Furthermore, patients only have to wait around twenty minutes on average to see their doctor at an urgent care center. That sort of wait time is nothing compared to a hospital ER, where you may have to wait around 1.5 hours to see one. Not to mention, workers in urgent care facilities are often encouraged to complete basic life support training like EMT CEU online while still providing patients emergency help in the clinic. These courses cover numerous basic skills that help professionals tackle sudden urgencies such as heart attacks, acute breathing difficulties, burns, and fractures. So you’ll always get the help you need in an urgent care facility.
Urgent care is less expensive than other healthcare facilities
Another benefit of urgent care is that it is far cheaper than other healthcare facilities like hospitals. Patients will only have to pay a fraction of the cost compared to any other type of healthcare facility. Typically, services that cost hundreds of dollars in a hospital ER, such as sore throat treatment or x-rays, will cost 80 percent less when you go to an urgent care center. So, if you’re someone who cannot afford the costs of an emergency room, an urgent care center is a viable option for you whenever you require it. Naturally, this makes healthcare more accessible, especially to those who are financially underprivileged.
Wait times are shorter at an urgent care center
Patients who go for treatments at a doctor’s office or hospital will typically have to book an appointment beforehand in order to receive treatment. However, with an urgent care center, you won’t have to wait long, typically a few minutes, to get your healthcare needs and requirements fulfilled. Walk-ins and urgent care centers allow patients to get treatment as soon as they suffer an injury or illness. Hence, consider this the next time you, a family member, or a loved one experiences a severe medical emergency, as ER wait times can stretch up to a couple of hours.
Urgent care centers are open 24/7
Unlike a doctor’s office, urgent care centers or clinics are open 24/7, including holidays and weekends. Typically, their service hours are more than a doctor’s office, making it an excellent choice when you suffer from a medical emergency, and have nowhere to go, especially if an emergency strikes in the middle of the night. Plus, no matter where you live, there will always be an urgent care center close by. In fact, according to an Urgent Care Association report, there are around 8,250 urgent care centers in America alone, with over 500 new centers opening every year.
Urgent care centers offer high-quality diagnostic services
A hospital or doctor’s office will refer you to another specialized diagnostics center for lab services, making you wait days for your test results. However, when you visit an urgent care center, you’ll receive high-quality, on-site diagnostic services with the help of state-of-the-art medical equipment so that you can get accurate and timely test results. Because of this, healthcare providers can quickly diagnose and treat various injuries and illnesses before they spiral down into a complication. Some of the diagnostics services these healthcare centers offer include rapid flu and strep testing, X-rays, antibiotics and other prescriptions, STD screenings, chronic disease screenings, medication refills, physical and sports exams, and much more.
Urgent care centers offer a variety of healthcare services
As mentioned above, urgent care centers can quickly diagnose and treat various healthcare conditions, considering they are not life-threatening. For instance, if you need relief from allergy symptoms or require quick treatment or checkups, but you don’t want to visit the ER or doctor’s office, an urgent care center is the place to go. In addition, these centers offer both primary care and preventative healthcare services.
So, if you’re looking for high-quality healthcare services but don’t want to wait for hours inside a hospital, then look no further than an urgent care center. Typically, these healthcare centers treat a wide range of medical issues, including; Insect bites, pink eye infections, sinus infections, ear infections, asthma attacks, diarrhea, body pain, colds, pneumonia, lacerations, cuts, burns, strains, sprains, fractures, upper respiratory infections, and much more.
This article mentions several benefits of urgent care, including ease of accessibility, shorter wait times, high-quality service, and cost-effectiveness. Looking at the benefits of urgent care above, we can see that a hospital or doctor’s office isn’t your only option when you’re looking to address your healthcare needs. So, the next time you or one of your loved ones experience a medical emergency, you can always consider an urgent care center as a viable option to get prompt help.